Do you make a mad dash to the pharmacy for the essential over-the-counter medications whenever you fall ill? 


Well, from now on, don’t wait until you are desperate. Coughs, colds, headaches, eczema and diarrhea disrupt the life of the entire family, so having the everyday medication you need to help you get through it makes all the difference.

So what medicines should you keep at home?

Here is our list of 10 medications that every adult and family should keep in their medicine cabinet to deal with minor ailments:


Pain Relief


Paracetamol, ibuprofen and aspirin are some of the most useful and diverse medications for minor ailments and household complaints. They are extremely effective for relieving minor aches and pains, such as headaches, joint ache and menstrual pain. They will also help to relieve the symptoms of common colds and flu, such as aches, pains and high temperatures.


Indigestion Treatment


These are a useful addition to any household, as we have all experienced the uncomfortable symptoms associated with indigestion – stomachache, heartburn or trapped wind can all be relieved with a simple antacid.


Oral Rehydration


Diarrhoea, fever and vomiting all deprive your body of much needed water and minerals. Oral rehydration salts can help restore the balance, and relieve any symptoms of tiredness or discomfort. They are available at your local pharmacy, and although they are not a treatment, they can help relieve the worst of the symptoms.




Summer isn’t too far away, so it’s time to make sure that your medication cabinet is stocked up with sun lotion. It is so easy to get sunburn, and too much exposure to harmful UV rays from the sun can increase your risk of skin cancer. Make sure the sunscreen that you buy protects against UVA rays, and is at least factor15.




If anyone in your household suffers from allergies, make sure you have a good stock of antihistamines of different kinds. They will help relieve the symptoms of food allergies and hay fever, and also soothe insect bites and stings. Check with your pharmacist first, though, because some antihistamines can cause drowsiness.


You should carry out basic housekeeping on your medicine cabinet every few weeks, replenishing depleted stocks and removing any out-of-date medicines. Make sure all medications are well-labeled, with the recommended doses clearly visible. Medicines should always be kept out of reach of children, and preferably under lock and key.

All of the above medicines are available over the counter at your local pharmacy. If you are in any way unsure about what medicines you should take, or have any other questions related to your medicine cabinet, do not hesitate to talk to your pharmacist. For out-of-hours pharmacy services in Richmond, click here.

Look out for our in-depth guide to your first aid kit, coming soon to our blog