Wednesday, December 14, 2011

How To Kick a Cold

On Sunday, after a full weekend of holiday party-ing, I woke up with a throat tickle. Attributing it to a weekend full of yelling my witty insights to people in party- crowded rooms, I assumed it was nothing more than residual hoarseness. Alas, I was wrong. By Monday afternoon, I realized I may have a full blown cold on my hands.

The Christmas miracle? Today I am already feeling MUCH better. As a teacher, I have weathered my fare share of viruses that are just strong enough to make you miserable, but not quite strong enough to justify staying home sick and undertaking the loathsome task of writing sub plans. Generally, (knock on wood) I can kick said cold in about 48 hours. How do I do it you ask? Well, here is my arsenal:

First of all, I start chugging water like a madwoman. I am for 100-150 oz of water daily during my sick time. Yes, it is a ton of water. Yes, it makes me pee constantly. But for every little bathroom break I'm having, my body is flushing (hah!) away those nasty germs. It cleanses the system and helps kick my cold to the curb. It's free people, and it works.

Now these next few items will cost a teensy bit of cash, but they are so, so worth it. Most can be found at Walgreens. At work, I am talking constantly, and because of this, my throat gets terribly dry and scratchy. Over the years, I have tested many, many different cough drops, and these Halls Triple Soothing Action Cough Drops do the trick. Those little vapory guys in their assorted mint flavors make my nasty cold infested head into a little steam room. I also love that they come in multiple flavors and are sugar free. When you are consuming 5-6 a day, these things matter.

Next, I always snag the Vick's Sinex Day/Night Combo Pack I love that these bad boys don't require you to sign your life away at the register when purchasing, and having everything in one box is oh-so convenient. The day pills do a great job at opening up the sinuses and relieving headaches, while the night ones knock you out so hard that even your snoring husband won't wake you. Win-win. I use these round the clock, in conjunction with the Zicam Zinc Chewables. I find these to be much less offensively flavored than the dissolving tablets, and I've noticed that if used correctly (every 3 hours during the day, and for 2 days following the absence of cold symptoms) that they really do seem to help shorten the time you are wallowing.

The last three items on my walking dead survival guide are items of necessity. When I have a cold, I'm super paranoid about spreading it to others. Hence the Germ-X. I have a ton of people in and out of my room daily, and I'd hate to get them sick, which will mean I will get sick. It's a vicious cycle. I also hate having nasty cold dragon breath, so I keep Altoids on hand at all time. The zinc chewables leave you with nasty breath, and these certainly help. Lastly, when I'm sick I don't have much of an appetite, so these chocolate-mint Luna Protein Bars, weighing in at about 200 calories each, taste awesome and make sure that I get a good mix of protein and carbs.

So, there you have it. If you are stupid enough to go to work when you are under the weather like I am, use these easy, on the go tricks to get you back to your sassy self in no time. Your body, and your colleagues, will thank you.

I wasn't paid any money to endorse any of these products. I get asked often how I kick colds so fast, so I thought I'd write this post. I am also in no way a medical expert, so if you feel ill you should ALWAYS consult a doctor. Blogs do not have the answers. Doctors do.

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