Tired of medicine? Try some home remedies

Image courtesy of "Paul" / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of “Paul” / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’ve been sick for the past 5 days. I think it’s the flu. (Yeah, I didn’t get my vaccination – shame on me.) I had the chills, stuffy/runny nose, fever, a massive headache, and a terrible cough. I quarantined myself on Saturday and slept on the couch so I wouldn’t get my husband sick.

When you’re sick you have funny dreams when you’re in and out of realizing that you’re still feeling like crap. On Sunday, I dreamt that I was on a cruise ship/TV show – not quite “Love Boat” but more like “The Office.” John Krasinski kept knocking on my door for room service then would run away.

But I digress…

Yesterday, I was happy to be sitting upright. Today was the first day I actually felt good enough to do stuff around the house and work.

I depend on medicine to get on with my life. I get terrible migraines on a regular basis and I’m on a generic form of Imitrex. When a bad cold comes, I’m quick to grab NyQuil or DayQuil (usually their generic form). But I don’t like the fact that I’m pumping my body with “chemicals.”

I find that what soothes me best are home remedies. Nothing beats a hot cup of lemon and honey tea to soothe a sore throat. My kids love it too. Luckily, my neighbor’s lemon tree hangs just enough on our side of the yard for us to claim the fruit (or take what has fallen). Lemons are nearly year-round here but they’re plentiful when it’s cold and flu season.

Honey and Lemon Tea:

  • 6oz hot water
  • Juice from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 tbsp honey (eyeball it)

The kids like more honey and I don’t mind it at all. It’s quite soothing. Honey also has some antibacterial properties so it’s a sweet way to get some healing.

Vinegar for fevers?

I was a sickly kid. Mom always sent me to the doctor for every ailment. I feel like all the antibiotics that I’ve been given has reduced my body’s ability to fight some germs. Although my mom had good intentions with insisting I take medicine, she also had some home remedies that worked. One in particular was using vinegar and water to reduce a fever.

I’ll never forget laying in bed, writhing in pain, and my mom walking in with a bowl of warm water spiked with vinegar and a washcloth. I would refuse treatment but would be too weak or too much in pain to fight her. She would wipe my entire head and body down with the mixture and I’d lay there, smelling like chicken adobo. The amazing thing is that it worked quickly – like in minutes. But my mom would make me sleep a little longer just to let it “set in.”

A shower is in order after a treatment like this!

Vinegar Fever Reducer:
Use 1 tbsp of vinegar to 1 cup of warm water. Dampen a washcloth with the solution and wipe all over head and body.

Apparently, the acidic properties of vinegar helps to cool the body down quickly. It’s stinky but it’s only temporary.

The Neti Pot

Yes, I was one of those people who chuckled at this video and swore that I would never use a Neti Pot.

A few friends and my sister convinced me otherwise. A few years ago, I went out and got the NeilMed NasaFlo Neti Pot and it has been a lifesaver. It took some getting used to—I had to get over the “I’m not drowning” feeling and just tip my head forward so I’m not swallowing the solution. If you figure that gargling salt and water would help a sore throat, surely a saline solution will help clear the boogies from your nose.

The great thing about the NeilMed NetiPot package is that it comes with saline packets that you just add to 8oz. of warm water. There were 50 packets in mine and I’m sure it will last me another 2 years.

I’m leaning more towards natural ways to heal my ailments and I’m always looking forward to learning more. A few friends recommend biofeedback for my migraines. I think that might be the next thing to look into.

What home remedies do you have? Share them in the comments below!