For most of us, hygiene is a natural part of everyday life – we wash our hands, we cover our coughs, and we wipe down surfaces – but that doesn’t mean we don’t come into contact with nasty, even dangerous, wintertime germs.
While we try our hardest to stay healthy, even the best of us can get run down during wintertime by a cold or even the flu. Keep reading to learn how you can start feeling better in no time during the colder months.
Don’t go crazy with nasal rinses or salt gargles.
While it might seem like you’re ridding your body of germs, overdoing it with nasal rinses and salt gargles may end up doing more harm than good. For example, tap water, which may be completely acceptable to drink, can be dangerous to use for a nasal rinse. Tiny, microscopic germs that live in tap water are essentially given a one-way ticket into the most vulnerable parts of your body.
Don’t throw out your Neti Pots just yet, though. Physicians recommend you simply boil tap water and allow it to cool to room temperature before using it, or use bottled/filtered water for your nasal rinse. And before you use a salt gargle, check with your physician to ensure this is a safe treatment for your illness. A salt gargle could alleviate symptoms in one case and exasperate them in another.
Try a couple herbal remedies
While herbal remedies can’t replace prescription drugs when it comes to treating viruses and infections, they certainly can support our immune systems and encourage our bodies to fight illness. If you’re under the weather, try cooking with certain spices and herbs, like turmeric, garlic and ginger. Turmeric is one the most powerful anti-inflammatory herbs and is found commonly in Asian dishes, like a warming soup to beat the flu. Garlic has antibacterial properties and ginger supercharges your immune system. Just stay away from any extremely spicy foods – you don’t want to irritate your stomach when you’re already under the weather.
Try boiling water and adding in a couple drops of essentials oils like peppermint or eucalyptus. Remove the pot from the stove and cover your head with a dishtowel while you inhale deeply, positioned over the pot. Make sure the steam isn’t too hot by hovering your hand over the pot for a moment – it can burn you just as badly as the boiling water. It’s an easy and quick method of alleviating some uncomfortable symptoms, like clogged sinuses that accompany the flu. If you’re stressed, add a drop of lavender for a nerve-soothing affect.
Don’t want to risk burning yourself? Take a warm bath and add a couple of drops to the water. Just don’t overdo it – you might end up giving yourself a headache in addition to your cold.
We want our entire community to have a fun, safe and healthy holiday season, and that means taking care of yourself. Let us know how you decompress and rest during this hectic time of year and give your body a break!
Have a cough? Fever? Sweats? You might have the flu, but check out this link to see if it’s a run-of-the-mill cold or something more serious.
Nutex Health, Inc. supports you and your family’s health. Come visit Victoria Emergency Center or any one of our concierge-level freestanding facilities for the emergency care you deserve, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.