As a chiropractor in Bridgend and Porthcawl, offering sciatica pain relief and full body adjustments isn’t the only thing we do. We also like to offer our clients general advice on staying healthy, especially as we’re now moving into cold and flu season.
To help you combat the cold and flu during these seasonal transitions, here are some useful strategies to getting through an irritating winter infection without relying on supplements or over the counter medicine.
You’re going to lose a lot of fluid from coughing, sneezing, and running your nose. So drink plenty of fluids, such as water, herbal teas, or clear broths to help keep your fluids up and your respiratory system moist.
Certain herbal teas have been used traditionally to support the immune system and alleviate cold and flu symptoms. Ginger, echinacea, elderberry, and chamomile are a few of the popular examples. Bear in mind that some of these teas can conflict with medication or other conditions. Always ask your GP first if you have a chronic condition or take medication.
Sleep off a Bad Cold or Flu
Working hard when you’re sick isn’t going to heal you any faster. Sleeping is essential when you’re sick and has been shown to improve recovery when infected with a cold or flu. Give your body ample rest and prioritize quality sleep.
Have a Saltwater Gargle or Honey and Lemon Tea
Have a sore throat with your cold? Gargling with warm saltwater can help soothe it and reduce inflammation. To make a saline gargle, mix half a teaspoon of salt in a cup of warm water, then gargle for 30 seconds.
Alternatively, mix a tablespoon of honey and the juice of half a lemon (30ml) in your tea and drink it to soothe a sore throat. It’s a tasty way to keep you hydrated too.
Inhale Steam to Relieve Congestion
Inhaling steam can relieve congestion, as it opens nasal passages and loosens stubborn mucus. You can use a steam inhalation device, or breath in from a bowl of hot water, a hot shower works too.
Our Bridgend Chiropractor suggests adding a few drops of eucalyptus, menthol, or peppermint essential oil to your water can boost the effect. Do not apply essential oils directly to your skin or nose, as you may have a skin reaction.
Eat a Balanced Diet
A variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins provide you with the essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to support your immune system and overall health. In winter especially, lack of sunlight affects the amount of vitamin D you produce, so be sure to obtain more from oily fishes, mushrooms, and almonds.
Manage Your Stress
Chronic stress has been shown to weaken one’s immune system, though the effects are different between each person and their circumstances. Nevertheless, managing your stress is essential to ensure it does not become a detriment to your health.
Practice stress management techniques and engage in relaxing hobbies like deep breathing exercises, meditation, yoga, or creativity. If you’re experiencing stress due to joint or muscle pain, a full body adjustment could be beneficial for you. Our chiropractor in Bridgend is always willing to help and answer any questions in that area.
Maintain Good Hygiene
Colds and flu spread easier when people aren’t practising good hygiene. Whether you are at home, work or a public place, avoid touching your face with unwashed hands, and be sure to wash your hands the right way.
Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your elbow when coughing or sneezing to help avoid spreading it to family members. Masks are of mixed opinions, but wearing one can make a difference in spreading or catching airborne viruses.
Can a Chiropractor Treatment Help With Colds & Flu?
Unfortunately, full body adjustments don’t do much to relieve colds and flu directly, but we do like to offer our clients general advice on staying healthy, especially as we’re now moving into cold and flu season. It’s best to wait until you are feeling well before booking an appointment with your chiropractor to minimise the risk of spreading any cold or virus.
Remember, while these natural approaches to colds and flu can be supportive, you should always have guidance from your GP and know when to seek medical advice or treatment. If things do not get better after a week, or you start experiencing worsening symptoms, you should call NHS 111 for advice.