Festival wellbeing – top tips and a giveaway!

With the 2012 festival season in full swing (see the NME‘s online guide to where, what and when) , before you pack your new shorts and over-sized sunglasses it’s worth bearing in mind and preparing for what could go wrong. Some of the most common problems stem from self-neglect, and here are some tips for keeping safe from problems that threaten to dampen your festival experience.

Healthy fun? Isle of Wight Festival 2012


A common, and serious, problem due to the amount of alcohol consumed at festivals. Keep a bottle of water on you at all times (and drink it!) Or take some neat squash to mix it with to make it more appealing.



If the sun is out, its no wonder that people want to enjoy themselves in the sun. But St. John Ambulance claims that this is the most common problem that people seek medical help for at festivals. It often goes hand in hand with dehydration. They recommend drinking lots of water, seeking shade wherever possible and applying a minimum of Factor 15 sun cream following the instructions on the bottle.


Getting frisky at festivals is inevitable, so take protection. Think of condoms as an essential item to pack along with toilet roll, plasters and water.


From broken glass or an innocent tumble cuts can get nasty if infected. Take a box of plasters; they will come in handy in some way or another – even to cover a small hole in your tent, or indeed your cut knee.  Savlon antiseptic cream will be sure to keep any nasty bugs from turning your cut green so apply a small amount under the plaster to be extra safe.

Festival stalwart Kate Moss


In the same wellies for three days? Hello blisters. Pack some Compeed blister plasters, they draw moisture out of the blister and add cushioning to ease the pain. £4.49 for a pack of five from www.boots.com And don’t forget a few extra pairs of socks!


Unless you’re lucky enough to be housed in VIP areas, many will have the delight of festival toilets. Smelly and riddled with bacteria, you wouldn’t want to stick around to give your hands a thorough clean, so in order to avoid illness, carry a small bottle of antibacterial gel to fully clean after a quick rinse.


Caused by dodgy chicken or simply the unsanitary environment, diarrhoea can make you feel lousy, sick and uncomfortable.  Dr Christian Jessen recommends packing diarrhoea pills, they will help it pass within hours and you can be back to enjoying yourself by the evening.  He also warns that some who have tolerated diarrhoea and continued partying regardless endured serious consequences.


With the amount of cigarettes smoked at festivals it wouldn’t be surprising if someone accidentally stubbed their burning ash against your arm. Similarly, some decide to take camping stoves, where the risk of burns is more serious. If burnt, immerse in/under cold water, do not rub any oil or cream on it as it had been proven to increase chances of infection, cover and seek medical attention. Burns left exposed are also prone to infection.

Insect bite/sting:

Just one mosquito bite or wasp sting can provoke the most irritating itch. The best thing is an antihistamine cream with the active ingredient Mepyramine Maleate, such as Anthisan or spray, I like Wasp-eze which aims to relieve the stinging itch caused by insects piercing the skin.



Win these fun festival essentials: a great giveaway goodie bag from Holland & Barrett

A fantastic natural festival emergency kit from Holland & Barrett comprising one packet each of Holland & Barrett Aloe Vera Gel, Tan Tablets, Good ‘N Natural Milk Thistle, Effervescent Vitamin C and Zinc tablets,  dr.organic Tea Tree Wet Wipes, Herbal Authority Tea Tree Oil, Neal’s Yard Wholefoods Mixed Nuts, Raisins & Peanuts, plus Herbal Authority Guarana.


One lucky reader, chosen at random on Friday, will win the whole goodie bag just by retweeting and following! Plus, why not tell us YOUR festival essential below? Good luck!




About the Author

Olivia is a graduate of Nottingham University where she read English. Olivia has written for schools magazine First Eleven, and been an intern at Conde Nast, and will be contributing articles on twentysomething health issues.

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