Thursday, 4 October 2012

Survival Kit: Colds

So I have been struck down with an almighty cold this past week/weekend and its continued the lag ends of it into this week. I hate having a cold, they always affect me so much and make me feel horrible. Aside from throwing up, having a cold is one of my most dreaded and hated things my body can inflict on me. I don't know if its just me but as I've got older, my colds seem to be worse. This could either be because I'm getting so run down with day to day life or colds have become more infectious and harder to fight in recent years. I had colds as a child and teenager, but never remember them knocking me for six like they do now.

I probably have fewer colds as an adult, which could be why they are worse when they do rear their ugly head. I would say I have 2-3 very bad ones per year, and usually follow a very stressful time. I had a terrible one over Christmas, my world has been turned upside down at the end of November so I did well to resist illness so long. May was my next hit and stupidly I went back to work too early and had to take two more days off the following week.

I love wikipedia for finding out all sorts of facts and I found the common cold page quite interesting, geek much! I loved anatomy and physiology at A Level and I guess I still like learning all the ins and outs, link.

I never used to know how to deal with my colds, often suffering until one day I got sent home from work in a  state of lovely full on cold, with strict orders to stop by Boots or Superdrug to get cold and flu tablets along with any type of throat lozenge (I think I had virtually lost my voice with this one). I was so overwhelmed with the abundence of products in the aisle for colds, not a clue what they all were and which was best or would help.

Its only in the past year or so, I have a stock in my house of products I know work for me that I turn to everytime to ease the symptoms of a cold.
 l-r, clockwise, Jakeman's Throat & Chest sweets, mansize Kleenex, Strepsils Cool, Kleenex pocket tissues, Vicks Vaborub, Vicks Nasal stick, Olbus oil, Aloe Vera Vaseline, Cold & Flu tablets 
 Tissues are always a necessity during colds to help nasal congestion. This is usually one of the worst symptoms for me and this time in particular I was blocked up for three days and no matter how much my nose ran, I blew it or I deeply inhaled decongestant I couldn't clear it. 
 I've always sworn by Strepsils Cool, they instantly stop me coughing and soothe my throat. I find coughs get much worse the more you cough so the key is to stop it, easier said than done. I found the Jakemans sweets in the cupboard at the weekend and in desperation gave them a whirl. I was amazed at how much they eased my sore throat and made me feel better. These are a bargain at about 60p a bag and the sweets are massive too so last a while. 
I'm not entirely sure I think these work...but I always take them. They help with a headache and I think the caffeine is useful as I don't drink tea or coffee and colds zap your energy. Alternatively my boyfriend suggested Anadin, they contain much more caffeine and there are different varieties. 
This is the best for soothing a sore nose, I managed to avoid a flaky, dry nose with this cold which is amazing considering how much I was blowing my nose over several days. I applied this regularly and one morning my top lip had cracked and it was fine by the afternoon. 
Olbus oil is the strongest product to help you breathe, and I adore the smell. I smothered myself in VapoRub   but could only smell it for about five minutes, but this is probably due to being so blocked up. This really helped at night when on my neck and chest, as I slept propped up and the fumes were coming up to my nose. The Vicks stick is my favourite product. One night I was awake until 4am, everytime I almost fell asleep I'd be awake again unable to breathe. I dug this out and laid back with it in. Before I knew it I was awake with the smell burning my eyes, nose and mouth. I would not recommend this at all. But for helping you breathe when awake you can't go wrong. 
This is one product I would not recommend at all. I used this at Christmas when I fell ill and it only prolonged my cold and made me feel worse. Plus it is the vilest thing I'd ever had the displeasure to drink. I don't think I can ever even consider putting myself through another sachet of this stuff. 

Two weeks on I'm still sniffly and tired, but over the worst. Everyone seems to be struck down with colds and coughs at the moment, and this cold certainly seems to be one of the worst I've ever had. 
What are your best ways to ease a cold? 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Search This Blog