Thursday, November 6, 2008

Under The Weather?...

What the heck does that mean? Aren't we always under the weather? The only time we can get above the weather is when we fly in a plane.

Anyway, I feel badly that I launched my political tirade and then didn't post yesterday, but I've been suffering with some sort of mutant cold virus. I've had a low fever, headache, cough from a tickle in my throat and fatigue, but no sinus symptoms which is typical of most colds. I could barely get off the couch yesterday; usually colds don't get me down like that. I'm sure it's not the flu; I don't feel THAT bad, and I got a flu shot three weeks ago.

I prefer to take a more holistic approach to cold relief. (Or is homeopathic. I'm not sure since I deny my hippy tendencies rather than embrace them.) This approach is partly necessity and partly desire. The necessity is that many cold relievers (Nyquil, Sudafed and others) give me heart palpitations and a jittery feeling. That's not conducive to a good night's sleep. In a fit of desperation, I will take a Sudafed early in the day, but only after all else fails. The desire part of the equation is that I don't like the idea of a multi-symptom cold medicine when I'm usually only bothered by a symptom or two. It's like using a daisy cutter bomb when a hand grenade would do.

So what is in my little natural medicine bag?

Peppermint tea - this works for stomach upsets, congestion and sore throats
Chicken soup - same help as peppermint tea, but more satisfying
Ginger ale - great on gas and other stomach upsets
Vicks Vaporub - my mom used to rub this on my chest when I had a cold as a kid. I like to just open the jar and breath it in. Now they've added it to tissues... great invention.
Honey and lemon juice - just a spoonful can sooth a cough and scratchy throat
Saline Spray - a non-harmful, non-habit forming sinus spray
Riccola drops - you can pronounce every ingredient in these, since it's all herbs. They really work too.
Ibuprofen - a girl's gotta use a drug or two
Steam - there's nothing like a good steamy shower to ease body aches, decongest a head and loosen up a cough. If I don't have time for a shower, I'll put hot water in a bowl, hang my head over it with a towel covering my head.

My newest cold relieving find is a Neti Pot. This could be why this cold feels so strange, without any sinus involvement. I've also found my sense of smell to be much sharper since I started using it. Last year, I developed a sinus infection a couple of weeks before Christmas. I was trying to prepare for seven house guests, and I had to lay down and rest every fifteen minutes or so because of headaches, sinus pressure and fatigue. I vowed it would never happen again, hence the Neti Pot purchase. The jury still out on whether it really works yet or not, but it certainly doesn't hurt.

If you have any cold relieving tricks, I'd love to hear about them. I especially love the ones that have been passed down through generations. Those are probably the ones that really work, too, since there was no Nyquil back then.


Aunt Becky said...

Since I've been pregnant or nursing for the past 2 and a half years, I don't have anything to add here. But I like your list.

Betty said...

I think you`ve mentioned them all. Vic`s V. rub and steaming always help us!

Aristarkhos said...

Hi! Yes that blip in Mumbai, India is me. I didnt leave a comment then cuz i was just browsing through (from Kitt's Blog).
FeedJit is cool isn't it? :) I set it to ignore my visits. And I have been using ClusterMaps from earlier on, so I didn't want to do away with the page impressions left by earlier visitors. Especially the one from Madagascar!

Your tips are helpful. I didnt know about the Neti Pot. I will recommend this to my sinus-affected friends.
Vicks tissues - neat idea. Are they mild? At times I find it too strong.
Do you guys get the Vicks Inhaler? It is handy but it's like a germ stick. My dad wouldn't let go of it even after his cold cleared. Ick!

My mum would rub Vicks on my chest and back, tuck me into a thick blanket - that worked wonders. She would also pin a clove of garlic to my collar. The pungent smell is supposed help clearing the nasal passages. Don't think it worked too well for me. Plus, I managed to stick one up my nostril once. That was the last time garlic was pinned to my collar. :)

For a sore throat, folks here also use a mixture of turmeric (just a pinch) and warm milk. I don't like it. It smells terrible, quite ghastly to taste and looks positively palid. But many say it works.

When i have a cold, or feel a cold coming on...I start popping Vitamin C tabs (not the chewies...the 250 mg ones) and stay away from cold beverages. Also try to eat a warm breakfast before taking the tabs. It works...either the cold/flu passes by or the intensity is reduced considerably.
Oh yea, salt water gargles for a sore throat.

P.S.: Thanks for visiting The Bit Bucket.

Aristarkhos said...

I forgot...about the term, "under the weather" :)

"Originally it meant to feel seasick or to be adversely affected by bad weather. The term is correctly 'under the weather bow' which is a gloomy prospect; the weather bow is the side upon which all the rotten weather is blowing."

Another version says:
A nautical term originated, possibly, in the British navy. When a sailor was ill, he was kept below decks, and thus, under the weather.

Kitt said...

Sorry you're laid low! If you like licorice, throat coat tea is immensely soothing.

I can't handle sudafed either, gives me middle-of-the-night panic attacks.

Hope you feel better soon!

She sure is strange! said...

I've been using a neti pot(or my version of it which includes a coffee cup of warm salt water and some cotton balls) for 11 years now and SWEAR by it!!!

I also take raw garlic cloves, sliced thin. Just pop 'em like pills!


Anonymous said...

Fear not the political tirade outfall. We are all exhausted by these 2 years of insanity and it's no wonder our immune systems have finally given up the fight.

I think it's important to discuss how we educate future generations. I wouldn't be surprised if there are some politicians out there with some pretty nasty colds right now!

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