Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Top 10 Essentials for Surviving a Cold

Hey guys, sorry for the lack of videos, I hope you don't mind too much. I came down with a case of conjunctivitous last Monday, on top of the cold I already had, and so I wasn't able to film. I just assume no one wanted to see my horrible red eyes, and I still can't wear makeup yet for fear of contaminating it.. So hopefully some blog posts and non-makeup related videos will suffice for now!

For today's post, then, I thought it would be fitting to talk about some of my essentials when I'm sick, some are just for comfort, and some have more practical purposes, but all of them will hopefully get you feeling better faster, or make you a little happier on the (sometimes very long) road to recovery!

1. Cough Candies

If you're coughing or have a sore throat, or even if your nose and sinuses are just really plugged up, cough candies can help a lot, and since there's no drugs in them, you can keep popping them as frequently as you want to! My favourites are the original flavoured, extra strength Fisherman's Friend drops. They don't taste like anything aside from the menthol and eucalyptus, but when I'm sick I don't really care. These ones are strong, and work well and for a fairly long time. I find they're great for soothing a sore throat as well as helping to clear my nose thanks to that strong Vicks Vapo-rub-like scent!

If you just can't handle something that basic, I'd suggest flavoured Halls; I prefer the cherry ones, but pick whatever seems most appealing to you. There's also Lemon and Honey, if that's more your jam. Just make sure they have the "mentho-lyptus* thing listed on the package if you want them to clear your sinuses and soothe your throat! Those are the main ingredients I'd recommend looking out for in any cough drops.

2. Tea

Tea is great! It tastes good, comes in a variety of flavours and types: black, green, white, herbal... mint, chai, fruity... Any of them will do good things for you when you're sick. First of all, tea is liquid, and you need hydration even more when you're sick! Tea is at least as good as regular old water when you're sick as well; I find cold water harsh on a sore throat, but hot tea is soothing and relaxing! Also both black and green teas are full of antioxidants which could help speed your recovery. If you want even more health benefits, you can pop into a tea shop and ask for tea for sick people, I know DavidsTea has lots of good blends for colds with great ingredients like lemongrass, eucalyptus, ginsing, and chamomile, to name a couple.

3. Honey

Obviously pairs really well with whatever tea you are drinking, especially if you are sick enough that your sense of taste is dampened... when that happens and my throat is sore, I glob in the honey and the thick, syrupy honey coats and soothes my sore throat like nothing else! Also, honey is known to be antibacterial, so maybe it can help to clear up your cold a little faster as well? It can't hurt!

4. Soup

Just like tea, this is a great way to pack more hydration into your day. Also like tea, it's hot and comforting. An added benefit of soup, though, is the nutrition! You've got to take care and feed your body when you're sick so it will have the tools and the energy to fight off the virus, so I'd recommend homemade or canned soups with real ingredients, especially veggies! Chicken noodle soup is great, and I know that some people swear it will actually make you better, but packaged Lipton chicken noodle? I'm not sure there's actually food in there... Though if that's all you want to eat, by all means, go ahead. My favourite sick person soup, though, is the basic Campbell's Vegetable soup... probably because it tastes like my childhood, but it's also loaded with veggies. Oh, and soup is salty, so it's going to get you some good electrolytes to help hydrate you as well!

5. Spicy Foods and/or Foods with lots of Garlic and Ginger

Spicy food when you're sick can be super helpful! It wakes you up and clears your sinuses like nothing else, and you can taste it! Being sick and not being able to taste anything is awful, and spicy foods, as well as garlic and ginger can help. If you can't eat spicy foods for whatever reason, I'd still urge you to load up on garlicky, gingery foods; Chinese food can be a good way to do this, as Chinese cuisine uses lots of those flavours. I've also just ordered a pizza with roasted garlic, and that can help too. And if you like spicy food, add some hot peppers, hot italian sausage, or capicollo to that pizza, and you'll finally taste something! Another great spicy food is chilli... also kind of a soup! Finally, the Sriracha flavoured chips from Kettle Chips are fantastic as a sick-person snack. Because not all food can be healthy!

6. Cozy Things

Alright, time to take a break from ingesting things and make sure you're bundled up and warm! This is vague, but do whatever is most comfortable for you, the main objective is just to make sure you're comfortable and warm. Not only is being sick just super uncomfortable and draining, but if you have a fever you might be really cold as well, so bundle up as much as necessary. Stay in bed if you can, or cozy up on the couch with fuzzy slippers and blankets and your dog, or if you really must go out, fuzzy boots and a big old sweater. Comfort is key!

7. Tissues

This may seem like a no-brainer, but I mean an actual box of tissues. The good ones. So many sick people seem to make due with toilet paper, napkins, paper towels, and the cheap shitty tissues, and this makes noses that are really red, raw, and painful. Seriously, just invest in some good, soft tissues. You'll feel so much better when your nose is not raw and sore by the end of day 1. I recommend the Kleenex Lotion tissues with aloe and vitamin E. Don't worry, they aren't greasy, they're just so much more soothing. Though caution: some "lotion" tissues can be greasy, so don't say I didn't warn you; stick to the Kleenex.

8. A good book

I'm a reader, and nothing can turn my mind off of myself like a great book. If you're the same and love reading, just indulge in it. You're sick, you deserve the me-time. Pick up one you've been meaning to get to, or if you're feeling super indulgent go back to an old favourite and let those beloved words and characters take you away to some place where you aren't sick, because you don't even exist!

Of course, if you just aren't a reader, this isn't the trick for you. Instead I'd suggest going to Netflix and watching those movies on your list you never seem to get around to. Or binge watch a show. Whether you're reading or watching, though, this is a great way to get in some rest to let your body fight back the cold while staying entertained.

9. Take a hot shower or bath

Though the online beauty community will not agree, baths aren't for everyone. Not everyone can enjoy sitting naked in a tub of hot water, no matter how many candles are lit, or how much money is spent on colourful, scented, glittery bath bombs. If you are this type of person, then take a hot shower instead. Not so hot it's burning you, but hot enough it feels warmer than you do. Take as much or as little time as you want, but do try to breathe in that warm, steamy air created by the hot water.

Of course, if you are a bath person, now is the time! Use whatever bubbles, salts, and bath bombs you want, just make sure none of the fragrances upset your stuffy nose. I'd recommend something minty or eucalyptus or lavender, if you have it, though if you just want to take a basic, hot, steamy, unbesmirched bath in plain water, then you do you!

Either way, don't forget to clean your body. Just feeling clean and sliding into a clean pair of pyjamas or sweats will feel nicer than lounging around in the same clothes, getting dirtier and greasier until you recover.

10. Sleep!

Sleep is always important, but lots of us don't bother getting enough. However, sleep is even more important when we're sick, even if you feel like you did nothing but eat soup and watch Game of Thrones on the couch all day, your body has been hard at work fighting to get you back to healthy. The least you can do is try to get yourself a solid 8 hours of sleep! I know sleeping can be hard if your medicines wear off and you wake up with your head full of cotton, unable to breathe, or if you are startle awake by your own coughing, but do your best. Maybe prop up some pillows so you're a little more upright if you just start dripping or coughing every time you lay down flat. Maybe try a nighttime version of your cough medicine to help knock you out. Don't stress if you wake up during the night, either. At least rest when sleep evades you.

At the same time, try not to oversleep! It can be really hard to get out of bed when you're sick, but remember you will feel so much better if you get up after that 8 hours, and make sure to take more medicine when you need it, rehydrate with tea, hot water, juice, soup, nourish yourself, and take a shower or bath. Yes, I'm saying it again. Remember that hot steamy water will help you feel so much better, and so will feeling clean.


Sorry there are no pictures for this one, but they would have just been for prettifying anyways for this post. I hope it helps someone out! Maybe I'll come back and add pictures later if there's time. Let me know in the comments some of your sick person essentials, or how you like to take care of yourself when you get sick!

Thanks for reading!

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