Sick Days

by Meri on January 16, 2013

Well…it’s that time of year again. Poppie and Mr. informed me yesterday, “I’m sick”, “me too” and then the fevers and overnight coughing party began. We’re on our third cold of the season with no break. These poor kids pick up everything especially now that they’re all in preschool.

Parenting is a strange 24 hour job and nothing shows you that more than cold and flu season. I’ll never forget when my kids were a little over one years old and our entire house got a stomach bug with the worst vertigo and nausea I’ve ever experienced while my husband was traveling for work. I had no help that day and it was a truly bad situation feeling so ill yourself but having to care for 3 sick kids and all their daily needs. That’s when you know…there are no breaks from parenting.

At least a common cold is easier to deal with, but it’s impossible to take good care of yourself without proper rest.

Because I, like many of you, can’t rest during the day with 3 kids who are sick and need help with their day to day tasks, I try my best to take care of myself in other ways so I can at least make the symptoms easier to live with. Here’s my get-through-your-cold symptoms easier tips:

  • Honey is…well…sort of amazing for colds. It coats your throat and alleviates coughing as much as many over the counter cough medicines without the dopey side effects. My kids and I use spoonfuls of honey throughout the day and especially at night. Works like a charm. Don’t give honey to kids under the age of one though.
  • Bring the honey tip to a new level using Manuka honey. This is a special honey from New Zealand that also has significant anti-inflammatory properties and has been shown to be a helpful treatment with sinus infections. The trick with this honey is you need to find a brand that has a UMF factor of 10 or more, the rating scale of the active ingredient.  Be aware it also comes with a hefty price tag. We don’t use this honey for any other purpose than colds or sinus infections in our household. Use regular honey for your normal day to day uses so you don’t break the bank.
  • Chicken noodle soup isn’t just an old wives’ tale. Dr. Stephen Rennard from University of Nebraska Medical Center decided to research his wife’s family chicken soup recipe to see if there was any evidence that it could help a cold and found that the combination of ingredients in his own family’s recipe and many store bought soups did provide anti-inflammatory activity. I love this story of home remedies passed down over generations actually showing validity in the scientific world. They even provide the recipe on the University’s website.
  • Fluids, fluids, fluids.  Water, tea, broth all help loosen congestion and work well. I like to use honey in decaffeinated tea throughout the day to alleviate some of the coughing episodes.

You may not be able to avoid a cold but you can certainly do some things to make you feel better especially when you can’t take the much needed time to rest.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Marcia @Frugal Healthy Simple January 16, 2013 at 7:24 pm

Very good tips, and good timing, as I’m home sick today. I got sick constantly the winter Nick was a baby. I was probably only healthy 30 days out of the 5 months from November through March.

I’ve been much better so far this time. I’m on my second cold since March. The first one was only a 1.5 day cold. I am hoping this one is the same. I try to make sure I get plenty of rest (I literally go to bed as soon as both kids are asleep), drink tea and water, get Vitamin C and Zinc.

The flu kinda freaks me out because of the baby. He’s had the shot (just barely), but it’s not fully effective for another 1.5 weeks. Flu is just hitting Cali now…

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Meri January 16, 2013 at 8:10 pm

Agreed with the flu…far worse than a cold. It’s such a challenging time of the year! Hoping you start feeling better soon! Make up some chicken noodle tonight!

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