Tips - Health & Relationships
Don't let problems with your health or issues with friends and relationships spoil your fun at schoolies. Check out our tips covering the main issues:
Dealing with friends and peers
1. Accept the fact that conflicts and disputes will inevitably arise when you are living closely with friends and sharing your space. Often a bit of 'time out' will help clear the air when there's been a disagreement.
2. Stay cool when trying to resolve a dispute, whether with a friend, housemate or visitor. Being polite and courteous goes a long way to getting your problem solved.
3. If you're fighting with friends, take time out to calm down. Get another friend to mediate and be prepared to agree to disagree or compromise on a solution.
4. Take care of your friends during schoolies. Good friends don't let their friends do anything stupid or anything they'll regret the next day.
5. Use your time at schoolies to plan how you'll stay in touch in the future.
6. Be respectful of others and their property.
7. Get together with your friends and/or housemates to create a set of 'house rules' that outlines acceptable and unacceptable behaviour. This will go a long way to avoiding and settling conflicts that may arise.
8. Don't give in to peer pressure. If you feel unhappy or uncomfortable about any situation, speak your mind in a calm and rational manner. It's okay to say 'no' and often your friends will respect you for your decisions.
Your health and well being
1. Don't forget to bring your Medicare card with you.
2. Seek medical attention if you need it. If you or a friend is suffering prolonged pain, headache, bleeding, vomiting, nausea, diarrhoea or fever, don't wait for it to go away - find a pharmacist, nurse or doctor who can help immediately.
3. Pack a simple first aid kit for your household. Include band aids, antiseptic, sunscreen, mozzie repellent, pain killers, bandages, scissors, tissues and tweezers.
4. Use shade when you can, especially when UV radiation is high - between 10 am and 3 pm.
5. Wear hats that shade your face and neck, loose-fitting protective clothing and sunglasses. Wraparound glasses are best.
6. Sunburn can occur in less than 15 minutes and can take a few days or weeks to heal depending on the severity and there is no cure for sunburn except time and patience. It also increases your risk of getting skin cancer down the track. So stay out of the sun between 11-3pm, and don't forget to slip, slop slap!
7. Mild sunburn can be treated at home, but severe and blistered burns need prompt medical attention.
8. Cover exposed parts of your body with a broad spectrum SPF 30+ sunscreen, twenty minutes before going out in the sun. Reapply every two hours. Don't use sunscreen just to be able to stay out in the sun longer.
9. Add a salad to your lunch and dinner to make sure you're getting lots of fresh veggies. They're quick and easy to prepare and a great source of vitamins and minerals.
10. Drink plenty of water before, during and after drinking alcohol to help you stay hydrated.
Sex and relationships
1. It's normal to have mixed feelings if you're thinking about having sex. It's your right to say no to sex. No one has the right to force you to have sex. Talk over your feelings and thoughts with the person you are involved with before deciding to have sex. Make sure you both want to have sex.
2. If you decide to have sex, protect yourself from STIs and unwanted pregnancy by always using barrier protection such as condoms or dental dams.
3. If you have unprotected sex or if a condom breaks you can get emergency contraception from a chemist (about $30). This doesn't offer protection against STIs.
4. Start taking the emergency contraception within 72 hours of having unprotected sex to avoid an unwanted pregnancy.
5. Don't agree to have sex if you don't want it or change your mind.
6. Pressuring someone else into having sex is sexual assault.
7. Drugs and alcohol can affect your judgement and prevent you from thinking clearly. Don't have sex with someone who is out of it and cannot give their consent, you will be committing sexual assault.
8. If you're under age, or if your partner is under age, you are breaking the law by having sex, even if you are both consenting to have sex.