NICOLA Sturgeon has said she will not be meeting her parents over Christmas as she urged Scots to take a cautious approach to relaxed restrictions. 

People across the UK will be allowed to form a "bubble" with two other households between December 23 and 27.

However, the First Minister has insisted that “just because you can mix with others indoors over this time, that doesn’t mean you have to”.

Sturgeon said that the new, relaxed guidelines were the "outer limits" people are being asked "to work within".

She stressed that her "default advice" remains: "If you can get through this Christmas staying in your own home within your own household, please do so."

READ MORE: Nicola Sturgeon: Please think carefully about whether you need to form a 'bubble'

Speaking at the daily coronavirus briefing, the First Minister said: “After all these months of sacrifice, I don’t want to put my parents … I don’t want to put them at risk for the sake of one day.

“If we wait just a few more weeks, or two or three more months, maybe they’ll be vaccinated and we can get together in a way that is safer.”

Sturgeon also suggested people think about celebrating Christmas differently this year, saying: "For example, and I know this is something I'm thinking about in my own personal circumstances, instead of meeting indoors for Christmas, go for a family walk together, exchange presents on the way, see each other outside. 

"All of this sounds difficult and strange but we are living in difficult and strange times." 

Jason Leitch, Scotland's national clinical director, also said he would not be meeting his own parents indoors over Christmas.

Another expert, Professor Andrew Hayward from the Government's Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), has said that the relaxation of restrictions is like “throwing fuel on the Covid fire” and that he would not be meeting with his family either.

Hayward warned the relaxing of rules “is likely to lead to a third wave of infection, with hospitals being overrun, and more unnecessary deaths”.

The First Minister has said the best thing to do is continue to follow the current guidelines, even when you are legally allowed to meet others indoors.

She said: “This year, the best gift you could give is sticking with the rules and protecting your loved ones.”