The UK Health “Hotspots”

The UK Health “Hotspots”

We’ve all been there; typing into Google health symptoms and convincing ourselves that we’ve got a life-threatening illness, when in reality all we’ve got is a common cold that’s on its way out.

Sometimes self-diagnosing our illnesses isn’t always the best method. Yet with the internet providing access to information that quickly answers our health worries, it’s the quickest way to find out the appropriate medication we need. More people than ever before are now choosing to diagnose their own problems and self-medicate, rather than visit their doctor or get advice from a pharmacist.

Here at Chemist Direct, we decided to do some research into which cities in the UK were the most proactive when it comes to dealing with their health issues, and have discovered some interesting results.

The Findings

Overall, research showed that across the UK the top method for treating our health worries was self-medication, with 45.5% of all people opting for this method over visiting their GP or pharmacist. This was as they felt it saved time and was just as effective as other solutions.

An overwhelming 83.3% of people in Northern Ireland said that they’d self-medicate, with 78.5% of people in Yorkshire and the East Midlands voting to do the same.

The study highlighted that people in the East Midlands opted to self-medicate as it was more convenient, compared to people in the North East who voted that personal laziness was their main reason for not taking a trip to see the doctor. Respondents in South Wales and the West Midlands were less likely to go it alone, with only 55% self-medicating overall.

Surprisingly, busy Londoners chose to self-medicate as they think it’s just as effective as other methods, and people in Yorkshire and Northern Ireland chose to self-medicate as they perceived that it was the most convenient option for them.

UK Health map

Men Hope Their Problems Go Away

The gender of the people involved in the study also had some interesting implications on how they addressed their health worries. Men said that if they were feeling unwell they were more likely to hope the issue went away, with women taking a more proactive approach and opting to do something about it when it comes to resolving their health issues.

However, it appears that if men are to seek action and be proactive to cure their illnesses, then on average they would do so much earlier than women. Most women tend to suffer feeling unwell for five or more days before taking proactive action, compared to men’s three days.

Men also said they chose to self-medicate as they thought it was less embarrassing than other methods, with women opting to visit a pharmacist because they thought it was more effective.

Older People Don’t Wait Around

The age of the consumers we asked also played a huge part in how they dealt with their health issues. Those over 65 said they’d do something if they felt unwell, as expected with health problems potentially causing more complications in later life, with 18-24 year olds opting to hope the issue went away instead of taking any action. This shows a clear divide in the way different generations address their health issues.

The study shows that overall, we’re a proactive nation when it comes to solving our health issues, with self-medication the preferred method for most of our consumers.

Image Courtesy of iStock

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