My Beautiful Wickedness

Desperately seeking cold therapies
December 26, 2007, 11:35 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I know that in time, my head will feel less squashy and my body less achy. There is no remedy but time. I’m looking for palliatives. What do you do to get through this eye-watery, ache-filled, snot-drippy, reality-shifty, floor-wobbly part? (I just woke up from a twelve-hour “nap.” I’ll probably be going right back down soon.)

It probably boils down to fluids and rest, but you know, trying not to be a slave to my present opinion (thanks Tom Paine) I thought I’d ask…


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Lots of heat and sleep tends to be my response to everything, but we all suspect that I may be a reptile.

For the snot-drippy bit, I like nasal sprays like Otrivin and the like. They have a slight tendency to enhance the room-spinning problem, though. As with most decongestents, they’re stimulant-y and may make your heart race a bit. I loooove how quickly they clear up anything even remotely snot-related, though. Even the worst sticky breathing is pretty quick to clear out with this stuff up your nose. A spritz in each nostril and about 5-10 minutes of sitting there waiting for it to take effect should do it.

My chosen hydration/throat maker-better-er is tea… usually ginger-lemon. A boiler full of water with chunks of fresh ginger and a couple slices of lemon (or just the juice/pulp, if you’re sensitive to bitterness and don’t want the rindy flavor), with honey or your sweetener of choice will go a long way toward making you feel warm and .. if not healthy, then cared for. Getting someone to make it for you is even better.

If you don’t want to drink either of those things, you can do impromptu humidification with them. I made a big potful when I was feeling gross and just let it boil down repeatedly, filling the house with gingery lemony goodness. I also did it with cinnamon and cloves, but that made the house smell like cookies. If you’re feeling really sick, try putting some Vicks VapoRub in the water instead. Then your whole house will smell like menthol.

The humidifying helps with the aching and eye-watering (unless you use the Vicks, in which case you’ve got a 50-50 chance of making the eye-watering worse. I like it, but Brev hates it). Also, if you’re a reptilian type like me and you need external heat sources to feel better, it makes the house all toasty-like. The big downsides are that if you do it on the stove you have to stay close to the kitchen and you’ll wind up steaming all of your surfaces… our door wept for a week. Gauging your water-damage level can be tough. That, and you have to keep adding water to the pot if you can’t convince anyone else to do it for you, which tends to make 12 hour naps inadvisable. All of that can be eliminated with a regular humidifier, and you can even put Vicks or boiled-down herbs/ginger/spices/medicines in, as long as you know how to clean it out afterward.

If you’re really achy, or you have the Sore Throat From Hell (that was the entire last month of my thesis. I have a body that reacts to stress by opening up lesions on my throat and inner mouth, breaking out in awful zits, and causing stomach distress. Even/especially when I’m not really noticing the emotional bits.), you should try the Tylenol (and generics, now) stuff in the wicked colors. I think those are the new, weaker versions – the one I took during my thesis was 1000 (yes, thousand) mg of painkiller per dose. I’m surprised I have a liver left after that – I managed to drink an entire bottle in two days. It works wonderfully, though, especially if you don’t have to be up and writing for a week or so straight.

… can you tell I’ve been sick recently? Heh. I’m *still* tired and sniffly.

Comment by magniloquence

Our favorite palliative sequence is a hot shower followed by a smoothie made of frozen mango chunks, vanilla yogurt, juice, and a big spoonful of crushed ginger–that’s mostly for sore throats, and works better in summer when the cold mango chunks are a relief. We don’t really have winter here, but any good hot soup full of ginger and garlic can’t be a bad idea.

Comment by pennylrichards

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