Residents encouraged to think self-care for life

In support of national Self -Care Week 2019 (18 – 24 November) Stockport Council and the NHS are calling on people to ‘Think self-care for life’ and take control of their health.

Think self-care for life’ is about making improvements in your life to protect your physical health and mental wellbeing now and in the future.

Self-care means all the things we can do on a daily basis and the choices we make to keep well such as eating healthy food, having a flu vaccination, giving up smoking, being physically active and getting enough sleep.

Self-care is also really important for anyone living with long term health conditions. You will see your GP or healthcare professional for only a few hours each year, the rest of the time you are making decisions about your health on a daily basis and managing your condition yourself.

You can find information, advice and support to help you make lifestyle choices to stay fit and well on the Healthy Stockport website. If you are living with a long term condition you can also find out about the things you can do yourself to help you live as healthily as possible and improve your quality of life.

Jennifer Connolly, Stockport Council’s Interim Director of Public Health said: “It’s never too early or too late to begin to make small, simple changes that will enhance and protect your health now and, in the future, and often, one small change will make a big difference to your wellbeing.

For example, choosing to become more active will not only improve your physical health, it will also boost your mood, particularly if you choose to exercise outdoors in the fresh air.

With largely avoidable conditions such as type2 diabetes, heart disease and COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease) on the increase in Stockport, I would urge everybody to understand what we can do ourselves to improve our health and help prevent these illnesses.

This is why the Council is backing and raising awareness of Self Care Week.”

Local GP Dr Cath Briggs, who’s also the clinical Chair of NHS Stockport CCG, added: “If you’re living with a long term condition you’ll be aware that medication isn’t the only thing that helps. There is so much you can do to help yourself. Keeping as active as you can and eating a healthy diet are really important. And it goes without saying that, if you smoke, finding a way to quit is vital if you want to improve your health.

“There are plenty of free NHS six week courses going on in Stockport for people with long term conditions. The Expert Patient courses will give you the skills to manage your symptoms better and feel more in control of your life.

“And don’t forget there are so many things going on in your own community that you can get involved with. There’s a whole range of activities – walking groups, gardening clubs, choirs, drama clubs, singing groups – all run by local people, just like yourself, who’ve decided to get out there and do something that will make them feel better and help them to connect with their neighbours and community.”

To find details about community groups, services, events and activities in your area visit Stockport Local.

If you are looking for support to help you with elements of your life that may be affecting your health, Viaduct Care’s dedicated Wellbeing and Self Care team based at GP practices across Stockport may be able to help. Support could be around long term conditions, lifestyle choices that may need tweaking or issues around housing and finance. If they can’t help directly they can direct you to services and link you in to groups that can. Your GP receptionist can make you an appointment with the team.