‘Tis the Season
This has been a sure season for colds and flu. The weather is so iffy, you can’t possibly know what to wear each day. Even the weathermen are confused. Like so many, I have not escaped the flu. As a matter of fact, I’ve had it twice already. Not a fun way to spend your birthday or Christmas, but unfortunately, I did. Let’s talk about some things we can do to help comfort those who catch this mess.
There’s often confusion between a cold and flu, and in my case sinus infection only makes it worse. I felt like my head was going to explode. I woke up very congested, but only in my chest. I couldn’t seem to get anything to come out of my nose, however I had plenty draining down my throat. I had severe body aches from head to toe. And, of course, cold chills and a fever. The drainage made me cough, and after a couple days of coughing, I felt like my lungs were coming up. I was so tired, it took all my energy just to get to and from the bathroom. A quick trip to the walk-in clinic confirmed it was indeed the flu, this time type B.
My insurance will not cover the cost for me to get Tamiflu twice within a 90 day period. Having had type A flu only 30 days before put me in this predicament. I decided to just tough it out without Tamiflu since I was already three days in. One pharmacist actually told us that Tamiflu is only 1% affective for the flu. If that’s true, I’d rather not put those chemicals in my body anyway.
What Else Can I Do
I began searching for home remedies. There’s so much information out there and I swear I think the internet gods are watching me. That’s all that popped up on my facebook news feed…home remedies for flu. Very timely, don’t you think? Oh well, I have to admit, I was thankful.
The first article I read was about cutting up raw onions and placing the pieces in a jar near the sick person. I cut up onion and placed a jar on the kitchen counter and even put one right beside my bed. It was supposed to turn black as it sucked all the germs and sickness into it. It did not. It only left my kitchen and bedroom smelling like onions, not that I could smell it from being so stopped up.
Raw Potato Slices
Next I moved on to the raw potato remedy. My grandkids are very snotty too, so my daughter tried this one for me. She cut potato slices and placed them on the bottoms of the kids feet, covering them with their socks, and put them to bed. This rememdy also was supposed to take in all the sickness and turn the potatoes black. The potatoes were black the next morning, but the kids still had very snotty noses.
The next remedy we tried is putting Vicks VapoRub on the bottom of the feet, covering with socks and going to bed. I had a good feeling about this one because I used to apply it to my kids chest at bedtime and it always helped them breathe easier through the night. This remedy also made me think of my grandmother. I can honestly still smell Vicks salve “in my mind” thinking about her. She used this stuff religiously, or at least it was something very similar. And maybe that’s because IT WORKS! Now, I must say it didn’t completely heal all ailments, but it did help with the congestion and cough. I recommend keeping a jar or two on hand at all times.
Vitamins, Supplements, Rest and Nutrition
One more, very important thing, I started doing to help my immune system is to ramp up my Vitamin C intake. I’m taking about 5000 mg daily and it seems to be keeping me free from the crud again. Also, Black Elderberry can help prevent flu. We order most of our vitamins and supplements from Vitacost online. They have great prices and usually send coupons with each order. You also need to get good nutrition.
If you are already sick, get plenty of fluids. This can be water, soup, juice, whatever you can handle, but get as much as possible. And also rest. That may be the most important thing of all. We tend to think we have to go and do our normal routine, even when we are sick. Take a break. It’s ok if the dishes or laundry are on hold for a day or two. As much as that bothers me, I know how important it is for my body to recover and rest is a key element to that.
If you’ve managed to dodge the flu so far, that’s great! Keep up the good work. Get plenty of good nutrition, rest and take some extra vitamin C. Most people only get 100mg or so a day, if that. And according to the national institute of health, that’s enough. I don’t agree with that. I am doing much better taking 3000-4000mg daily and you probably will too.