It’s flu season, but you probably already know that. If you’re in the first few days, you’re probably bed-ridden, spreading germs like crazy, and feeling really icky. So, put the laptop/tablet/phone away, get the sleep you need, try to alleviate your symptoms, and keep hydrated.
I’m a huge believer in reducing symptoms, so I’m totally open to over the counter medicines as long as they don’t do me more harm than good (always check the list of active ingredients). I also believe there are a lot of common sense things I can do, involving no specific drugs, or vitamins, or even foods, that still make me feel better enough to think about resuming life as normal.
So, this list of recommendations is for the 3rd, 4th, or 5th day of being sick, the ones I call ‘Could I?’ Days; when I feel significantly better and start wondering if I should get back to work, run errands, and clean up. Then, after trying to do just that, I realize that although I’m clearly on the mend, I am not well enough to resume my life, yet. If that is you, try some of my home remedies to feel better:
1) Take a nice hot shower/bath to help break up the phlegm, taking in deep breaths of steam. Being clean automatically makes you feel better.
2) Put on clean PJs/Nightie/ T-shirt and sit up in a chair for a while with a blankie tight around your chest for warmth.
3) Have a cuppa your favorite hot drink (with lemon and honey, if possible), inhaling the steam between sips.
4) Light a scented candle if you have one, or bring something that smells good near you. It’s entirely possible I’m crazy, but I find it opens my sinus passages for my nose to have something to search for.
5) If you have them, get each one of your furkids to purr or wave their tails – I have three cats and on those days I can please every one of them I win the trifecta. When you stimulate love and pleasure for them, they return it to you. Love heals.
6) Laugh out loud. Scientists have discovered that the act of laughing creates endorphins that help in healing, so watch comedy: a favorite film, TV show, even cartoons if that’s what gets you to giggle. I like witty dialogue, so I often end up rewatching The Philadelphia Story, or Harvey.
I’m recommending watching something over reading something because what I do involves so much writing. If you spend more time using your eyes watching videos all the time, or always on a small screen, pick up a good book to get lost in. (I recommend my new release, When Butches Cry, to carry you away for a few hours.) Give those neural pathways a day off.
7) Take frequent naps. Doctors (my sister and father) have told me that the majority of healing happens during sleep. The body is on ‘light duty’, as it were, and that gives it the time to repair damage and fight enemy germs.
You’ll feel better soon, I hope! Remember, you are in charge of keeping basic necessities going so the body can heal optimally. In other words: Take care of you, You.