It’s that special time of the year for the holidays, the chilly winter air, and sniffly noses. Winter months tend to keep us warm and cozy, so it is of ultimate importance to take good care of yourself – body, mind, and spirit! We have discussed previously some of the ways to boost your immunity throughout the colder months. However, sometimes that simply isn’t enough to keep the cold and flu at bay, and then we have to get back to the state of health and wellness!
The cold and flu can be very uncomfortable, with body aches, fever, runny nose, and sneezing, and may last between 5 – 10 days, which is the same amount of time as medically treated ones. Therefore, one of the best cures is TIME!
So while you’re waiting for time to pass toward recovery, there are 7 ways to help the time go by with some comfort:
1. Steam it up. Turn up the heat in the shower and close the bathroom door to create a steam room. You can also put some essential oils in the shower and bath; I prefer the Young Living Essential Oils of Peppermint, Thieves, Eucalyptus, Breathe Again, and others. Spend some time in the “steam room,” which will help loosen the mucous and moisturize the nasal passages. Also, remember to follow it up by blowing your nose frequently or suctioning the baby’s nose. You can also use a diffuser with the essential oils throughout the day and evening to make sleep time more comfortable. With a fever, you also want to continue to keep yourself bundled up and sweat it out. Although it may be uncomfortable, a fever is not a problem, but rather it indicates that there is something your body is trying to fight on its own, so instead of trying to reduce it, allow it to run its course.
2. Drink (and eat) up! Increase your fluid intake, which will help keep you hydrated, thin the secretions, coat your throat, and improve your comfort level. So make sure to keep drinking water, warm water and hot tea with honey and lemon, and soups, especially the chicken noodle soup, for its anti-viral properties. Don’t forget to add extra fresh garlic and herbs (ginger, parsley, thyme, sage, turmeric, and rosemary) to your foods! Mixing garlic with lemon juice and honey is another way to help boost your immune system!
3. Use the Neti pot! Loosening the mucous in your nasal passages may be a process, but it’s necessary to help you breathe and continue your road to health. Keeping the nasal passages clear will help prevent an additional sinus infection, plus you’ll feel more comfortable being able to breathe easier. Using the Neti pot with a warm saline solution will help your nose clear and breathable. Again, remember to follow it up by blowing your nose frequently or suctioning the baby’s nose. As a result, your nose may feel a little raw, so putting a nourishing and moisturizing balm, such as coconut oil, under and around your nose will help.
4. Lightly tap the chest. You can lightly tap or clap the chest and back, especially with children. This light percussive technique is done with an open palm and only requires pressure slightly harder than burping a baby; this will create light vibrations that help loosen the phlegm and make breathing more comfortable. Afterwards, it is also a good time to use a vaporizing chest and/or back rub, which could be as simple as putting a few drops of (warming) essential oils in some coconut oil.
5. Get some rest! As TIME is your biggest ally in healing a cold, that also means that you need to give yourself the time to heal, which means that you need to slow down, a little at the very least. I realize that in itself may seem like a huge feat, but it’s necessary to help you heal and spend less time being sick and uncomfortable. Because dragging it out longer than necessary will increase the risk of even longer recovery time and additional infections. So ask for help with the kids, reschedule some events, and stay put and bundled!
6. Get adjusted! Call your chiropractor and schedule an appointment to get your nervous system checked right away; don’t wait! Your immune system can definitely use a boost and the best way you can do that is to get a chiropractic adjustment. We don’t mind that you are symptomatic and we are not afraid to catch the cold or flu from you! All it means is that we’re going to get adjusted as well. Whenever I’m feeling less than stellar, I go see my chiropractor! And it makes a HUGE difference in how my body is able to heal itself!
7. Know when to go see a medical doctor! If you have been giving yourself the time and the care to get healthier, you should be back to your awesome self within 5-10 days. However, if your symptoms have worsened over 5 days or have not improved at all within 10 days, check in with your primary care physician to make sure you do not have a more serious infection or bronchitis.
What have you tried? Please share your suggestions and recipes!
Be healthy & happy, Dr. Tijana
If you do not already have a local chiropractor, call Dr. Tijana at 706.254.4579 to schedule your first appointment for YOU & YOUR FAMILY for a comprehensive health assessment TODAY!