max temp: 12°C

min temp: 2°C


Make the Right Call: Your essential festival guide for health and wellbeing

10:00 10 July 2014

Last year

Last year's Latitude Festival

This week, for our Make the Right Call campaign, which aims to direct people towards the right healthcare provider whether it is a GP, pharmacy, NHS 111 or A&E, we focus on health and wellbeing at festivals. Health correspondent Lauren Everitt reports


The 2014 music festival season is well under way, with Suffolk’s very own Latitude festival set to begin next week.

Having fun and a good time is great for our health and wellbeing – and by making sure you are prepared and ready you could prevent yourself having an unexpected injury or illness which could turn the good times bad.

Dr Mark Shenton, a GP in Stowmarket and chairman of the NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Having fun is one of the best medicines you can give yourself.

“Music festivals are a great environment to let your hair down, just be careful you don’t overdo things. By taking a few simple precautions this could be a summer you’ll remember forever, rather than one you’d rather forget.”


It’s all too easy to get carried away with the booze, especially if you’re partying with friends, when you can lose track of how much you have consumed.

Alcohol is a diuretic (meaning it removes fluid from your body), so if you drink too much you could end up dehydrated.

Dehydration leads to many of the symptoms of hangovers such as a splitting headache, dizziness and sickness.

The last thing you want is to miss your favourite band because of a raging hangover so:

n Drink plenty of water so you don’t become dehydrated

n Drink water or non-fizzy drinks between each alcoholic drink. Fizzy drinks speed up the absorption of alcohol into the body

n Don’t drink on an empty stomach – try eating a meal which contains carbohydrates such as rice or pasta – this will slow down the body’s absorption of alcohol.


If you use prescription medicines don’t forget to take a supply with you.

Minor injury and illness can happen at any time, which is why it makes sense to be prepared. By taking a well-stocked mini first-aid kit with you, you will be able to quickly deal with cuts and grazes, headaches and upset tummies. It needn’t cost much to buy the essentials and they won’t take up much space in your bag, simply have a chat with your local pharmacist who’ll be happy to advise you. Consider the following items:

n Sticking plasters to deal with cuts and grazes

n A small bottle of disinfectant to clean wounds

n Paracetamol for headaches

n Anti-diarrhoea tablets

SEXual health

Having unprotected sex could mean you leaving a music festival with more than a nice tune in your head.

Unprotected sex can both increase the risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease such as gonorrhoea, chlamydia and syphilis and lead to unwanted pregnancy. Having a sexual transmitted disease isn’t fun and could lead to infertility.

One of the best things sexually active young people under 25 can do is get tested for chlamydia. Most people won’t know they have it, yet it is estimated 1 in 12 sexually active young people may have the infection. Getting tested is easy. If you are under 25 and sexually active you can request a free testing kit to be posted to you by:

n Texting KIT to 84010 (text name, address, age and sex)

n Calling the Chlamydia Screening Office on 01473 228723

n Emailing suffolkcso@nhs.net

n Find out more at www.amiclear.com

n The testing kit will be sent in a plain envelope


You can protect yourself from contracting or spreading germs that cause diarrhoea or upset tummies by washing your hands. Bring a supply of antibacterial hand gel and wet wipes so you can wash your hands after using the loo and before you eat.


Take a supply of sunscreen with a sun protection factor of at least 15. Applying the sunscreen regularly will help protect you from harmful rays which can damage your skin and lead to skin cancer.

Don’t forget to protect your eyes too. Sunglasses offer the best protection from the sun’s harmful rays. Wearing a wide-brimmed hat can also provide valuable protection and help prevent the sun’s rays reaching your face and eyes.



Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Ipswich Star visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Ipswich Star staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Ipswich Star account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Bogus caller victim. Library image.

A Hadleigh resident has fallen prey to a phone scam run by crooks posing as bogus police officers.

Museum bosses have gone back to the drawing board following their lottery bid rejection.

Hopes of a multi-million-pound lottery windfall for Ipswich Museum have been dashed – forcing borough chiefs to reconsider the ambitious £23m project to transform the High Street campus.

High winds are set to hit Suffolk and Essex. PA Photo: Chris Ison.

A yellow weather warning for high winds has been issued by the Met Office for Essex and Suffolk across the weekend.

Cannabis was found at Ipswich house

An illegal immigrant is facing a jail term after police found nearly 400 plants and seedlings at a cannabis factory set up in an east Ipswich house.

Orwell Bridge

A man from the Ipswich area has died after falling from the Orwell Bridge, police said today.

Suffolk County Council's cabinet arrived at Elstree today - the home of the Star Wars franchise.

The day after county councillors discussed cutting millions from the authority’s budget over the next two years, its cabinet members are on a £4,000 training course at the world famous Elstree studios.

The release of the John Lewis advert has become an much-anticipated event in recent years. Picture: John Lewis/PA

Christmas adverts have boomed in recent years with the likes of John Lewis, Marks and Spencer and Tesco leading the way.

Abellio Greater Anglia

Rail services running through Bury St Edmunds face delays of up to 25 minutes or cancellation due to a train fault.

Ben Gummer and Mark Pendlington at Ipswich rail station.

Campaigners seeking to improve rail services between East Anglia and London have insisted that the new report into infrastructure is good for the region – because it makes little reference to the route.


A broken down lorry is blocking the exit slip road from the A14 towards Felixstowe docks.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24