Cold and flu season is upon us. Find out how you can treat the symptoms of your cold without medicine.
There’s never a good time to get sick, but being sick when you’re stuck on the road, it is often the worst possible time to be sick. Many cold remedies make you drowsy or dizzy. What can you do to ease cold symptoms homeopathically while you’re over the road?
The best thing to help avoid getting a cold is to wash your hands, thoroughly and often.
Here are some options:
Blow your nose the right way and do it often:
It’s better for you to blow your nose that it is to sniffle. Blowing your nose loosens the mucus and helps prevent the mucus from becoming clogged in your sinuses. Don’t blow your nose too hard. Blowing your nose too hard can cause earaches. The best way to blow your nose: Press a finger over one nostril while you blow gently to clear the other.
Ha! Of course this one is tricky. When you’re on the road and you have time to rest, REST. Avoid getting on the computer or playing video games. Close the curtains in your bunk closed to block out the light. This will allow your body to settle into a deeper sleep cycle.
Gargle with warm salt water:
“Gargling can moisten a sore throat and bring temporary relief. Try a teaspoon of salt dissolved in warm water, four times daily. To reduce the tickle in your throat, try an astringent gargle — such as tea that contains tannin — to tighten the membranes. Or use a thick, viscous gargle made with honey or a mixture of honey and apple cider vinegar, a popular folk remedy. Steep one tablespoon of raspberry leaves or lemon juice in two cups of hot water and mix in one teaspoon of honey. Let the mixture cool to room temperature before gargling,” WebMd reports.
Drink hot liquids:
When I was a kid, the first thing my mom made for us when she found out we were sick was to make us a cup of hot tea with honey. Turns out, mom was right, drinking hot fluids helps loosen the mucus membranes, which relieves nasal congestion.
Take warm showers:
Steamy showers help moisten the nasal passages.
Apply hot or cold compresses around your sinuses:
Either temperature may help you feel more comfortable. You can buy reusable hot or cold packs at a drugstore, or make your own. Take a damp washcloth and heat it for 55 seconds in a microwave (test the temperature first to make sure it’s not scalding), or get hot water from the tap and fill up a sealable baggie. Or take a small bag of frozen peas to use as a cold pack. This also helps relieve pain from sinus pressure or sinus migraines.
Sleep with your head elevated:
Sleep with an extra pillow or a rolled up blanket under your head. This will help with sinus drainage while you sleep.
Use saline nasal sprays:
Use saline nasal sprays or make your own salt water rinse to irrigate your nose. Salt-water rinsing helps break nasal congestion while also removing virus particles and bacteria from your nose. Here’s a popular recipe:
Mix 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon baking soda in 8 ounces of warm water. Fill a bulb syringe with this mixture (or use a Neti pot, available at most health foods stores). Lean your head over a basin, and using the bulb syringe, gently squirt the salt water into your nose. Hold one nostril closed by applying light finger pressure while squirting the salt mixture into the other nostril. Let it drain. Repeat two to three times, and then treat the other nostril.