Sucking and blowing and all that jazz. Sounds fun, right?
More than fun, it’s imperative. Life affirming behaviour that you will be grateful to do when you’re congested. Of course the sucking and blowing I’m referring to involves saline solution, a squeeze bottle…uh…wait. Perhaps I need to be clearer here.
Blowing your nose and sucking up saline water – again all about the nose – in order to clear your sinuses is what I’m talking about.
Because as if the sinus infection/flu wasn’t bad enough, if you’ve had a kid or more, you get the added bonus of most likely wetting your pants anytime you cough or sneeze. If you are 8 months pregnant with a flu/sinus infection and you sneeze, cough or basically shift position you will as a matter of course wet your pants – don’t talk to me about kegels – and know that you’re the reason I am sharing my pearls of wisdom.
There are few things you can take that are safe during pregnancy. Everything here you can do/use, pay particular attention to point #6.
So here is how you can alleviate your painful flu/sinus symptoms and get better sooner:
[Do note that I am not a doctor or health care practitioner of any kind that any advice/suggestions/tips you read here are not intended to replace the care you are given by the doctor of your choosing. I’m just a mom following the advice of a plethora of other moms who’s evidence of success is purely anecdotal].
Okay, with that out of the way, are you ready?
1. When you START to feel like you are coming down with something, whip out your neti pot or nasal bottle irrigation system as I like to call it and start doing multiple “rinses” throughout the day. I don’t care where you are – at the office, in the car, do it! You will hate you for not doing it if you get sicker. Don’t know what a neti pot is?
This is a neti pot. The one above is the model I have. You can find any number of different styles and you can buy them at any pharmacy. The idea is that the warm water is poured into one nostril and (eventually) drips out the other nostril. Want to see it in action?
Or, how about neti-ing as a group? Because you know, why would you want to drip snot out of your face in private?
2. If you irrigated yourself as per step one and still got sick, bummer. Double or triple (as per my naturopath whom I adore and am still heart broken over her move to Chicago) your Vitamin C intake. No more than 3000 mg per day until your stool (that’s poop) is soft.
When it softens it indicates that you’ve had enough and cut it back down to 1000 mg daily until you’re better. Other supplements that boost your immune system are: zinc. And, Heel, a naturopathic medicine company makes three cold/flu/sinus remedies that’ll knock your socks off. You can learn more about them here, most health food or natural health centers worth their while carry the line. This was my arsenal for attacking this bout of flu/sinus grossness:
This is for flu/cold symptoms. This is for sinus/rhinitis etc.
3. Steam your face over a pot of hot water – do not burn yourself, that would just suck even more – to loosen the mucous stuck in your face. Blow your nose and wash your hands. In fact wash your hands or at least sanitize them every time you touch your face.
4. DO NOT consume Dairy. It aggravates your mucous membrane making it worse. No: milk, cream, yogurt, ice cream, cheese of any kind.
5. Take a lemon. Squeeze the juice into a glass and gargle with some of it. The rest of it, swallow (again, only swallow if you have not gargled with it, want to be clear here). If it’s too much for you to tolerate, add some warm water and honey to sweeten.
6. Moan and complain until friends and family bring you soup, pick up your kids and do laundry. If your husband is worth his salt, he’ll fill in the gaps and give you a much needed reprise so that you can recuperate. My husband is not available for sharing. He’s mine, allllll mine. Ask someone else.