13 Thoughts You Have When You're Suffering From The Winter Cold
Is it just me or just everyone seem to be suffering from the dreaded winter cold at the moment?
At an event last week, twelve people had to cancel because they had the flu. TWELVE.
And another five turned up with the remnants of a cold.
Maybe the January Blues are actually the January Flu's. Because no-one seems immune.
I managed to get my turn in early (Christmas day, if you must know - lucky me) so I seemed to have skipped this month's trend.
My boyfriend David however, is currently in the midst of a rather potent dose of man flu and so the house is a sea of tissues at present.
And I know lots of you are still conquering the sneezing, blocked nose, chesty cough, fatigue, aches, pains and migraines too.
So because I can't be there with you, with a bowl of chicken broth and a giant packet of tissues (soz, I would be if I could!), I thought I'd dedicate a post to you instead.
This is a sponsored collaboration with Covonia
First up, here's a tally of 13 thoughts you're probably thinking right now...
- You promise yourself never to take breathing through your nose for granted EVER again. Who knew being able to breathe while sleeping was so important, eh?
- I wonder who gave this cold to me? How dare they. HOW COULD THEY. Do they not know how much I am now suffering?! I bet it was that woman who sneezed without covering her mouth on the train. Eurgh. Rude.
- Why me. WHY NOW? I was planning a really sociable weekend but now I have to stay home at watch Netflix. On second thoughts, is that such a bad thing? Yes, yes it is. And yes Netflix I AM still watching Friends.
- Maybe this isn't actually a cold. Maybe I'm actually dying. * Furiously Google symptoms.* Oh god, yes I'm dying.
- Is this the new normal? Will I be ill forever? Will I ever be able to speak again without sounding like a croaky frog?
- And on second thoughts, will I ever be able to meet another human again without coughing through 90% of the conversation.
- I wish I had a dog right now to look after me.
- Did my boss actually believe me when I called in sick? I now feel guilty about all the times I called in sick when I wasn't, because this is obviously the karma for it.
- Clearly those green smoothies I made last week (and spent 1.5 hours washing up the blender for) DIDN'T work in boosting my immune system. It's all LIES.
- Maybe if I ate 10 + oranges, it might perk me up enough to go to the birthday party tonight.
- *looks in mirror* EURGH, who is that?! What a sorry state. On second thoughts, no-one can see me like this. Is that tissue stuck to your nose?
- Who cares, leave it there.
- I wonder how powerful your sneeze would have to be in order to actually blow your brains out.
And then just as a bonus no. 14. I wonder whether it was THIS outfit, that I wore in the freezing cold minus 4 Scottish countryside, that resulted in me getting ill over Christmas. Was wearing my snazzy new skirt worth it? Probs.
Have you ever seen anyone look SO cold?
So when I'm not wearing very inappropriate-for-the-weather attire, I can sometimes be a sensible Sally and I do have a few tips for getting better (courtesy of Covonia) to share in case you're going through the dreaded Winter Flu right now.
For relief from a day-time dry cough, Try Covonia Dry & Tickly Cough Linctus* (RRP £4.89 for 150ml) which provides soothing relief of dry coughs and sore throats. The active ingredient is glycerol.
For relief from a day-time chesty cough, Try Covonia Chesty Cough Mixture Mentholated* which contains two expectorants; Squill and Liquorice Liquid Extract, along with menthol which works as a decongestant, which are all proven to provide effective relief of troublesome chesty coughs. (RRP £4.75 for 150ml). Always read the label.
Eat the right food
When you are poorly, your body needs more calories than normal to function – that’s because it has to work harder to fight off the germs. But this isn’t an excuse to start chomping down on Ben & Jerry's and Pringles! Soz. As comforting as it is (I feel you), you're going to need food that has the right vitamins and minerals to assist you on your road to recovery. Instead, fuel your body with food and drink that will give you the extra energy you need, banana and oat pancakes are a good option (and super easy to make) or some green leafy veg fajitas would also be a great option. And remember to keep yourself hydrated!
Practice good hygiene
Research by Covonia revealed that over a quarter of people (27%) admit that they go a whole day without showering when they’re ill and 23% leave a trail of their snotty tissues everywhere they go! Glamorous, eh?
But being sick isn't an excuse for laziness and it's super important to shower daily and make sure you wash your hands frequently throughout the day to reduce the risk of spreading germs. Throw away your tissues after you've used them and wash your hands each time you do this. Sneezing and coughing into a tissue isn’t only polite, but it also prevents germs going in to the surrounding the air and landing on surfaces, minimising the risk of infecting others.
Take a tailored cough treatment
Being proactive and treating your cough with a tailored treatment is the best thing you can do. Self-pity won’t do you any favours! The right cough mixture can work to relieve your symptoms while your immune system fights off the infection. Cough syrup won’t cure a viral infection (nor will anything else, including antibiotics) but it can offer relief.
There is no such thing as a ‘one cough medicine treats all’ there are a range of different products on the market, so make sure you’re picking the right products for your individual needs. A dry cough can be treated with a demulcent, which can help by coating the throat. A chesty cough can be relieved with an expectorant cough mixture to help loosen the phlegm and make it easier to cough up from the airways.
Visit a pharmacist
Many people undervalue the role their local pharmacy can play in helping them to tackle their cough head on and rush to their doctor at the first sign of symptoms. Pharmacists are highly trained healthcare professionals who are well versed in identifying the type of cough you have and will be able to recommend the right medicine based on your individual lifestyle needs. By visiting a pharmacy in the first instance, it will not only be much quicker than getting a doctor’s appointment, but you will also have a much wider choice of products available to help treat your symptoms.
I may have touched upon this already but staying hydrated is even more important when you’re ill. Your body will be working overtime to recover, so it will need plenty of fluids to replace those lost through sweat to help you feel well again. Keep a bottle of water with you when you’re out and about.
Take a hot shower
Taking a shower can help to relieve tension and soothe stiff, achy muscles. So let the hot water work like a massage on your shoulders, neck, and back. Having a hot shower before bed will not only help to relax you, but the steam can also help to loosen the mucus and relieve congestion from your nose and chest, which may help you breathe better as a result.
Get a good night’s sleep
Getting enough sleep is very important, whether you’re ill or not, but getting a good eight hours when fighting a cough can do you a world of good. During this time your body can work hard to repair itself and it will build up enough energy to allow you to power through another day, no matter what is thrown at you. However, that can be easier said than done when you’re suffering with a blocked nose and irritating cough, which can make it difficult to get any rest. If you’re struggling to get enough sleep, then ask your pharmacist about a night time specific formula which will can help to reduce symptoms.
Covonia Hot Dose Cough & Cold Syrup provides relief from cough and cold symptoms to help you get a better night’s sleep (RRP £5.49, active ingredients are Dextromethorphan Hydrobromide 6.65mg andDiphenhydramine Hydrochloride 10mg). When mixed with just 15ml of hot water it delivers a unique hot “shot” sized dose for sipping. Its powerful formula provides comforting relief for your symptoms at a time when you need it the most. Always read the label.
Leave the house
Unless you are bed ridden, then you really shouldn’t stay cooped up indoors all day. Staying indoors with the central heating up on high on all day can actually make your cough symptoms worse! So get up, get dressed and brave the great outdoors. The fresh crisp air might help to clear your airways as well as your head! Activities to lift your mood, such as listening to your favourite music, indulging in a little retail therapy, or going for a brisk walk, will also help to speed up your recovery and generally just make you feel better.
Do some gentle exercise
I used to truly believe that girls who exercise through illness or their period pains are the ones surviving any future zombie apocalypse. I mean, I am blown away by their dedication, seriously. Because all I want to do when I'm unwell is lay in bed surrounded by a mountain of tissues, occasionally wailing at whoever will listen about how poorly I am. Self-pity however, doesn't make me feel better. And apparently, mild to moderate physical activity is no bad thing when you have a cough or cold. It can both keep illness at bay in the first place by boosting your immune system (I fully appreciate this doesn't necessarily help you now) and aid recovery by boosting your bodies natural defences.
Do you have any tips of your own to help aid recovery from the dreaded winter cold? Have you had it yet?
This post was written in collaboration with Covonia.
However all miserable 'thoughts when you're having a cold' are entirely my own.
*always check the label before use