Lets Talk: Dehydration



Dehydration occurs when you don’t have enough fluids in your body. Severe dehydration can cause serious medical problems that require medical attention.

Signs and symptoms of mild dehydration include:

  • Being thirsty
  • Dry mouth, lips, and tongue
  • Getting dizzy or light-headed, particularly when standing up
  • Headaches
  • Having dark yellow or brown urine, and not going as often

Signs of severe dehydration include:

  • Breathing fast / rapid breathing
  • Fast heart rate and low blood pressure
  • Fevers
  • Being irritable, drowsy, or confused
  • Have little to no urine

If you begin to experience any of these symptoms, you should seek out a cool place, loosen any tight clothing and remove unnecessary clothing, while drinking small amounts of cool water. If there is no improvement – seek medical attention.

Young children and babies are at a greater risk of becoming dehydrated than adults, especially when they are unwell. The best treatment for mild dehydration is to give your child more fluid to drink, such as water or oral rehydration solutions such as Gastrolyte or Hydralyte – these are also available as icy poles which can be easier to give to children. If your child refuses water or rehydration fluids, try diluted apple juice, or their usual milk. Do not give drinks that are high in sugar (e.g. flat lemonade or sports drinks) as these can make dehydration worse.

The best way to prevent dehydration in children is making sure they drink enough water per day, providing extra drinks of water in hot weather, during and after exercise, and during illness is particularly important.

If your child is showing signs of severe dehydration or you are concerned, seek aid from a medical professional.

Christmas Giving 2023

How it went:

The votes for our 2023 Christmas Giving campaign are in. We would like to once again thank our members for their amazing support in helping to decide where these much needed funds will go.

Warwick Friendly Society is pleased to announce this year’s Christmas Giving, which encourages members to choose how the Society’s yearly Christmas Donation is distributed.

The Warwick Friendly Society was founded in 1908 to support members of the Warwick district.  

It is fitting therefore that the charities our staff have nominated for the Society Christmas Giving have a focus on the community as a whole in these trying times.

Protea Place, Warwick Senior Citizens Centre and Zack Locke’s Flock are the three organisations & charities that Warwick Friendly Society will highlight during the shopping period up to Christmas.

With a mission to provide a safe and welcoming environment for vulnerable women who may be experiencing homelessness or disadvantage.
A place of safety, dignity and acceptance that will empower women to rebuild and transform their lives.
A home-like drop-in centre where women are encouraged to self-determine through connection and support.

The Warwick Seniors Community is a Not for Profit Organization. The members, are a dedicated group of community volunteers who provide community activities and a Community Centre for the residents of the Southern Downs Community.

Zack Locke’s Flock is a group of four local ladies who, in 2022, came together in honour of Zack who lost his life to suicide the previous year at the age of 17.
Zack Locke’s Flock have worked tirelessly over the last two years to raise funds for and promote awareness of mental health issues as well as to create a sense of support and connectivity within our local community.
9 lives are lost to suicide every day. Perhaps our greatest strength in changing this is working together to let people know that they are not alone, that there is always someone they can reach out to and that help is available. Our vision is to reduce suicide and its impact within our area and to help inspire conversation, collaboration and connectivity within our community thus developing a support network for anyone in need.

How it will work

  • With each transaction in-store (no minimum spends and can be from any department), members will receive a token (must be a current member)
  • Choose which charity you would like to support from the on-counter display
  • Pop your token in the box


$3000 will be distributed between the three charities according to the proportion of tokens in the boxes.  These funds will be distributed during January 2024.


*For every transaction made in-store, each member will receive one promotional token (limit of 1 token per transaction). Place the token in the entry box on the counter, selecting the individual charity that you wish to support. Warwick Friendly Society will make a charitable donation to each of the three charities at the end of the promotion, based on the proportion of tokens contributed to each charity. The total donation will be AUD$3,000. Christmas Giving Programme Promotion runs from 4/12/23–27/12/23.

Snake Bites & First Aid

Knowing whether a snake bite is dangerous or not can be difficult. There are two different types of snake bites to be aware of – Dry bites and Venomous bites.

Dry Bites are when the snake strikes, but no venom is released. They can be painful and may cause swelling and redness around the bite area.

Venomous bites are when a snake bites your body and releases venom into the wound, this venom contains poisons that are designed to stun, numb, or kill other animals.

Symptoms of a venomous bite include:

  • Severe pain around the bite (This can take time to develop)
  • Swelling, bruising, or bleeding from the bite.
  • Bite marks on the skin – these might be obvious puncture wounds or almost invisible small scratches.

Once venom starts to spread within the body, symptoms may develop including:

  • Breathing difficulties.
  • Headache, confusion, or dizziness.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Nausea, vomiting or abdominal pain.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Muscle weakness or paralysis.

You should always provide emergency care if you or someone else is bitten by a snake – including CPR if required. Snake bites should always be medically assessed and treated, even if the person who was bitten seems ok.

In the event of a snake bite, follow these steps and try to remain calm:

  • Get away from the snake.
  • Ensure they rest and help them to stay calm.
  • Follow the steps of basic first aid – DRSABCD.
  • Call triple zero (000) and ask for an ambulance. If calling triple zero doesn’t work, try calling 112.
  • Apply a pressure immobilisation bandage.
    • If you can’t use a pressure immobilisation bandage because the bite is on the stomach or back, apply constant, firm pressure.

Things that you SHOULD NOT do:

  • Do not wash the bite area – venom left on the skin and clothing can help identify the snake.
  • Do not apply a tourniquet (a strap to stop blood flow).
  • Do not cut the wound.
  • Do not try to suck the venom (poison) out.

Friendlies stock a large range of first aid kits and immobilisation bandages, be sure to ask our friendly staff.

Lets Talk: Antimicrobial Awareness

World Antimicrobial Awareness Week (WAAW) runs every year from the 18th to the 24th of November. It is a global campaign to raise awareness around the risks of the overuse of antibiotics.

Antibiotic resistance or Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) happens when germs, such as bacteria, viruses or fungus that can cause infections begin to resist the medicines used to treat them. These resistant bacteria can then spread and potentially infect people or animals which can be difficult to treat.

Antimicrobials are medicines that kill or slow the growth of germs (bacteria, virus, fungus) that cause diseases. Antibiotics are the most commonly prescribed antimicrobial; their main use is to help the body’s natural immune system fight bacterial infections.

Antibiotic resistance can occur naturally in bacteria, it often gets worse when people are taking antibiotics. The bacteria adapt, become resistant to antibiotics, and begin to multiply instead of dying. There is a common myth that people become resistant to antibiotics, but this is not true – it is the bacteria becoming more resistant, not the person or animal.

These bacteria that have gained a resistance to antibiotics can easily spread and infect more people or animals, making it harder to treat common infections in both. Some bacteria are now so resistant that there are no antibiotics that can be used to help treat certain infections, and there are very few new antibiotics available to replace them.

Simply put, the more antibiotics we use, the faster and more serious resistance develops in bacteria. We can’t just rely on new antibiotics to fight these resistant infections, we need to reduce the risk of bacteria developing resistance by:

  • Preventing infections by regularly washing your hands and keeping up to date with vaccinations.
  • Prevent food-borne infections by washing fruits and vegetables and cooking food properly.
  • Understand that antibiotics only work against bacteria. They do not work for colds and flus which are caused by viruses.
  • Don’t pressure your health professional for antibiotics if they say you don’t need them, ask about other ways to relieve your symptoms.
  • Only take antibiotics when they are prescribed for you, don’t use or share leftover antibiotics.
  • Follow your health professional’s instructions when you are prescribed antibiotics.

Antibiotics are a medicine and, like all medicines, they can cause side effects. When you take antibiotics when they are not needed, you are taking unnecessary risk. As always, check with your medical professional regarding any use of medications.

Lets Talk: Carers in our community

Nationally there are 2.65 million carers around the country who provide unpaid care and support to family members and friends who have a disability, mental illness, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol, or drug issue, or who are frail aged.

Anyone can be a carer, but there are many out there who don’t identify as one. Caring may include help and support with a range of daily activities including:

· Dressing

· Showering

· Arranging doctors’ appointments

· Helping with shopping

· Managing medications

· Helping around the house.

The list can go on and on, but the main thing is that carers form an important part of Australia’s health system and are the foundation for our aged, disability, palliative and community care systems.

If you are a carer, there is support from the government in the form of online information, over the phone consultations and some groups even do information seminars and various support workshops. There is also a Queensland specific carers support program run by Carers QLD Australia, they also have advice about the NDIS and can help you with any queries you may have.

National Carers Week is an opportunity to recognise, celebrate and raise awareness for those carers in our community. The week runs from the 15th to the 21st of October, so please join us in showing our appreciation of those community members that do provide such an invaluable service.

Lets Talk: Asthma Awareness

Asthma is a common condition that affects the airways in your lungs, causing these airways to become more sensitive and leads to inflammation when exposed to certain triggers. Once these airways are inflamed, symptoms like coughing, wheezing and breathlessness begin.

Asthma generally affects 1 in 9 adults and 1 in 5 children, however anyone can develop asthma – even if you didn’t have it as a child. Experts aren’t sure why some people have asthma and others don’t, but genetics do play a part – you are more likely to have asthma if an immediate family member has asthma, hay fever, allergies, or eczema.

Asthma triggers cause the airways to narrow and lead to asthma symptoms. The triggers can vary from person to person, but knowing what the triggers are, and managing them can lead to better controlled asthma.

Some common triggers of asthma are:

  • Allergens such as pollen, dust, food items and mould.
  • Smoke from cigarettes, bushfires, and traffic pollution.
  • Irritants such as cleaning products, aerosol products and chemicals.
  • Physical activity.
  • Infection from viruses.

Sometimes asthma can flare up and the symptoms are worse than usual – this is when it becomes an asthma attack. An asthma attack may feel like you are not getting enough air and has been compared to breathing through a straw.

During a severe asthma attack, there can be more serious symptoms like:

  • Difficulty speaking.
  • Blue lips.
  • Reliever puffers not helping.
  • Exhaustion from trying to breathe.
  • Deep sucking motions at the throat or chest while trying to breathe.

If you are living with asthma, having an asthma action plan is recommended. This is a set of instructions you and your doctor put together just for you – it generally includes:

  • A list of your usual asthma medicines along with doses.
  • How to recognise symptoms of an attack.
  • Advice on what to do in an asthma emergency.
  • The doctors contact details should they be required.

Poorly controlled asthma can have a significant negative impact on your life, ranging from fatigue and poor sleep, being unable to be physically active due to reduced lung function, and poor mental health.

Taking your medicines exactly as prescribed is important, if you feel that your asthma is affecting your quality of life or finding that you are using your reliever more than you used to, it may be time for a chat with your doctor or pharmacist about your medicines.

Lets Talk: Wound Awareness

Every day, nearly half a million Australians suffer from a chronic wound with the cost of managing this close to $3billion annually. Despite this, wounds remain a silent epidemic. Wounds can affect people at any stage of life, however the most concerning are wounds that don’t heal, and go on to ulcerate.

However, these wounds are completely treatable with the right care.

A wound is any damage or break in the surface of the skin.

  • Accidental: Burns, abrasions, paper cuts & skin tears.
  • Surgical: Incisions.
  • Disease related: Diabetic and Vascular ulcers.
  • Skin conditions may also develop into a wound: Eczema or Psoriasis.

Wounds generally fall into two categories:

  • Acute
  • Chronic

Acute wounds occur suddenly and progress through the stages of healing as expected.

Chronic wounds are acute wounds that have not progressed through the stages of healing normally. They may heal at a much slower rate, heal only partially, or recur after partial or complete healing. These chronic wounds are almost always associated with underlying chronic diseases that affect either blood supply or how the cells function at the wound site.

Chronic wounds typically fall into three categories: Pressure Injuries, Diabetic Ulcers and Leg Ulcers.

Pressure Injuries: Also known as bed sores, pressure sores or decubitus ulcers, these wounds are caused by pressure and/or shearing force to the skin. This generally happens to people with limited mobility or frailty who are unable to regularly move a part or all of their body to a different position.

Diabetic Ulcers: These ulcers usually begin on the feet and are a result of the nerves and circulation in the body caused by diabetes. There are three main types – Neuropathic (Due to a lack of feeling), Ischaemic (Due to poor blood supply or circulation), and Neuro-ischaemic (Combination of both). If left untreated these can lead to amputation in the worst-case scenarios.

Leg Ulcers: A leg ulcer is a wound between the knee and ankle joint that is slow to heal due to circulation problems. There are two types of leg ulcers – Arterial (Usually occur on the lower part of the leg, can be small and sometimes deep and often painful), and Venous (Usually occur around the ankle, are shallow and can be painful).

If you have a wound that is not healing like it should – be sure to consult your local medical professional.

Community Focus – headspace Warwick

headspace Warwick is part of a government funded organization with over 150 across Australia service that provides free support to young people aged 12-25 across the areas of mental health, physical and sexual health, alcohol and other drugs, and work and study. headspace Warwick is funded to provide support to young people with low to moderate needs through one-on-one counselling, engagement activities and groups. We have supported young people through school stress, issues with relationships, grief and loss, and managing mental health issues such as anxiety and depression.

 We aim to provide the most appropriate support to meet the needs of the young people utilizing the wide variety of skills and knowledge that our multidisciplinary team possesses. If our service is unable to meet the needs of the young person, we will refer to the most appropriate service available through our No Wrong Door policy. headspace National offers online counselling support through eheadspace, and online Work and Study support.

We also aim to increase the mental health literacy of the Southern Downs community through presentations at schools and local businesses, and community events and activities.

Our centre is located at 58 Palmerin Street Warwick, with easy access from Rose City Shopping World and the main street. We are open Mon-Fri with early appointments available on Tuesdays and late appointments available on Thursday.

We also operate an outreach to Stanthorpe three days a fortnight on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. It is important to note that we do not operate a Stanthorpe office, and all enquiries are taken through our Warwick centre.

This year, Headspace Warwick is celebrating 15 years of supporting young people across the Southern Downs and surrounds. Since 2008 we have provided support to more than 4,000 young people over 30,000 occasions of service.

Headspace centres are led by young people through the Youth Reference Group. The YRG assist with all aspects of the centre’s operation from décor, events, and activities, through to recruitment of new staff. We are continually looking for young people to join this group and if you or anyone else is interested please contact us via phone or email or drop into the centre.

Assisting with governance is our Consortium of local services and organizations, including the Warwick Friendly Society. This support is greatly appreciated and highlights that the work we do does not exist in bubble and effective support for young people is built on services working together.

If you have any questions about our service, please contact us on 07 4661 1999 or drop into our centre at 58 Palmerin Street. A referral from a GP is not required, young people and their family/friends can self-refer.

Lets Talk: Diabetes Week 2023

National Diabetes Week runs from the 9th to 15th of July this year, with our focus being the mental and emotional health of people living with diabetes. Raising awareness will shine a light on diabetes stigma and mental health.

According to Diabetes Australia:

  • More than 4 in 5 people with diabetes have experienced diabetes stigma. 
  • Almost 700,000 people living with diabetes experience a mental or emotional health challenge every year.

Stigma is experienced in different ways, be it being blamed for having diabetes, injecting insulin in public, or when experiencing the effects and complications of diabetes such as low blood sugar.

This National Diabetes Week let’s rethink how we think about diabetes.  

  • Let’s reduce the burden with more compassion.
  • Let’s reduce the blame with more understanding.
  • Let’s reduce the barriers and help people get support.
  • Let’s rethink

Diabetics can face additional challenges, which is why we recommend you are prepared by:

  • Having a sick day management plan.
  • Managing your blood sugar levels with the use of a blood glucose monitor.
  • Having a discussion with your doctor about your diabetes.

People with diabetes are at a higher risk of severe complications from the flu and are more likely to develop serious respiratory conditions. Hence, we at the friendlies recommend you get the yearly flu vaccine to stay protected.

We also understand that some people may be struggling with their mental health during these challenging times. If you need support, the NDSS National Helpline is more than happy to help (1800 637 700) or come and see us at our 2 handy pharmacy locations and we can point you in the right direction.

Help us raise awareness about diabetes by spreading the word. 


Lets Talk – Probiotics



Probiotics are a type of “good” bacteria found in some foods and supplements. While we usually think of bacteria as something that can cause diseases or other problems, probiotics can help maintain a healthy gut.

Probiotics can help to lower the number of “bad” bacteria that may be present in your gut – especially the ones that cause illness or inflammation, they can also replace those problem germs with good or helpful bacteria.

Research has shown when and how probiotics might be helpful for certain health conditions such as:

  • Diarrhoea: Especially when used with certain antibiotics. Probiotics may also help with infectious diarrhoea – particularly with children.
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease: This includes Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis. Some probiotics might help keep Ulcerative Colitis in remission (A state of little to no disease activity), while preventing Crohn’s disease from relapsing or getting worse.
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome: Probiotics can sometimes help ease symptoms, including stomach pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, and constipation.

While there are good bacteria already in the body and they are considered safe for most people, there are always things to consider. There is the possibility that taking additional probiotics can trigger an allergic reaction – causing mild stomach problems, especially in the first few days as your body adjusts to the increase in good bacteria. You could experience stomach upset, gas, diarrhoea or bloating – these symptoms will usually clear as your body gets used to them.

If you have immune system problems or another serious health condition, you may have a greater chance of issues or side effects while taking probiotics. Be sure to check with your doctor or Pharmacist before taking any probiotics to ensure that you are getting the correct one for yourself.

Always check with a GP or pediatrician when giving probiotic supplements to a child. If you are pregnant or nursing, you should talk to your before trying any supplements.