How to Get Medical Help Over Christmas

How to Get Medical Help Over Christmas

There is never a ‘good’ time for illness to strike but becoming unwell over the Christmas period can feel unfair and a bit annoying.  

Of course, whilst everyone is indulging in mince pies and turkey dinners all you want to do is join in. This article will help you find the right help, at a time where some health services are more limited.

NHS 111

With most GP surgeries closed for a several days over the festive period it can be difficult to know what to do.  It is tempting for some to turn to A&E at the first sign of ill health. However, often you may be better off staying at home.  We advise you to familiarise yourself with the healthcare options below in case of an unexpected illnesses.

Whilst emergency departments such as A&E remain open 24 hours a day over the festive period, there will be some minor injuries units also open within the Bridgend region.  

To receive care and treatment at one of these units people should contact NHS 111 first either by calling 111 or visiting the website. People are recommended to get in touch with NHS 111 when they have any medical concerns that are not an immediate threat to life or limb.  

People contacting NHS 111 will be given a specific time to arrive at either their nearest hospital or minor injuries clinic. It is important you stick to these times as they help to reduce crowded waiting rooms and ensure those most in need are given priority. 


A handful of pharmacies across Bridgend will be open on Christmas Day and throughout the festive period.  Pharmacies are a great place to go for urgent medication or quick healthcare advice for minor ailments. 

Pharmacies can help with common conditions such as earache, teething, eye infections and aches and pains.  Your local pharmacy will also be able to provide emergency contraception medication and advice.  Antibiotics are not available over the counter; however, they can make suggestions as to what medications you could use as an alternative.  See below for the pharmacies open during the festive period in the Bridgend region:

Christmas Day

Maesteg Pharmacy, 20 Talbot Street

Telephone Number: 01656 732278

Opening Times: 13:00 – 14:00

Boxing Day

Boots UK Ltd, 8 Caroline Street

Telephone Number: 01656 659221

Opening Times: 10:00 – 16:00

Well Pharmacy, 8 The Triangle

Telephone Number: 01656 669802

Opening Times: 10:00 – 14:00

Well Pharmacy, Pyle Cross

Telephone Number: 01656 740269

Opening Times: 10:00 – 14:00

Support Helplines

We understand the Christmas period can be a difficult time for some, there is a plethora of support services ready to help you when you need them.  Below are organisations you can get in touch with during the festive period. 


The Samaritans are a charity who aim to listen and help those in distress.  Whatever you are going through you can call them anytime from any phone for FREE.  Their listeners will never impose any attitudes or beliefs on you, they will simply listen and advise where necessary.

Opening Times: 24/7, 7 days a week

Contact: 116 123 or [email protected]


Kooth is an online mental wellbeing community for children and young adults.  The online community alongside trained specialists are there to support you through anything big or small.  You can chat to the team about anything on your mind via message or live chat.

Opening Times: 24/7

Join the community by signing up on thier website.


Shout is a free, confidential 24/7 text messaging support service for anyone struggling to cope.  They assist people who are feeling anxious, stresses, depressed, suicidal or overwhelmed and those who need immediate support. 

Opening Times: 24/7

Contact: Text ‘Shout’ to 85258 and recieve a response from a real person


We know that Christmas can be an extremely difficult time when you’re grieving.  Cruse aims to help the lives of bereaved people when they need it most.  If you are feeling down because of a bereavement, contact Cruse and someone will be able to help you cope with how you are feeling.

Opening Times: Christmas Eve 9:30am – 5:00pm, Christmas Day 10:00am – 2:00pm, Boxing Day 10:00am – 2:00pm, New Year’s Eve 9:30am – 5:00pm, New Year’s Day 10:00am – 2:00pm.

Contact: 0808 808 1677


Over the Christmas period domestic abuse increases.  If you are experiencing any kind of abuse, you can call Refuge who will give you advice and guidance about your rights and where support can be received. 

Opening Times: 24/7

Contact: 0808 2000 247

Please remember that you should always call 999 if the situation is life threatening or you need urgent care.  Stay safe and well this Christmas.