Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Colds go away!

UPDATE:Just learned 3 of my girls have step throat. That cost me $80 to find out ($20 each co pay) but since Hagan's wants people to get prescribed drugs from their store, they made a deal with our doctor and gave us free medication! So I saved about $30. So no gym, no fun time for mom. Its gonna be a long week......But we will be doing the same thing listed below. They have a horrible cough and all of the stuff below seems to be helping them out. Just hope I don't get strep throat.

Today I woke up feeling very refreshed. I scrambled to find my slippers and off I went to wake my older girls for school. My oldest says she doesn't feel very well which concerns me because she never complains about anything. Then my twins wander into the living room and tell me the same thing. Oh no, please say it isn't so. Nuts! One of them has a fever. So thats 3 out of 4 kids that are sick. Lucky me! I get the only healthy child off to school and off I go to get some medicine for the girls. My favorite place to get anything for the home is Whole Foods. Its the closest all natural store to me and I love their staff who helps me anytime I need help with anything. I thought it would be nice to share with you what we do when a cold or flu comes our way. I want people to know that all natural homeopathic medicine is better for your family and most of the time its cheaper.

We have used several different brands of liquid cold medicine but somehow we go back to Boiron each time. It can be found just about anywhere now which is great. I received a sample pack from the company about a year ago and it was the first all natural type of medicine we tried. I was skeptical about it because we had only used main stream medicines from the local grocery store. The medicine came through with flying colors. My kids love the taste of it and I love that they are not getting drugged up.  They offer two forms of medicine. Liquid is my girls favorite because it taste like honey and has no after taste. I never have to hold my girls down to give them their medicine anymore. Don't judge! You know we have all done it! lol. The other form is quick-dissolving pellets that taste sweet. Its more of a treat than a medicine really. Today I picked up the large bottle of Boiron Chestal Honey for $11.99 with a $1 off coupon that they had at the store. 1tsp-2tsp is all they need so this will last a long time.  It's in a paper box and a glass bottle so it can be recycled.  I also picked up a box of Oscillocococcinum, which is for flu like symptoms, for my 5 yr old with a fever. It comes with 6 doses of quick-dissolving pellets which is good for 2 days.  Once her fever is gone, its liquid medicine for her.

Recently I switched from main stream cough drops to Thayer's Slipper Elm Lozenges. At $2.99 a box I was skeptical once again. Boy was I wrong. My kids love these things and they work so good.  Our favorite flavors are tangerine and cherry.  These lozenges are preservative free, menthol free, gluten free and lactose free. Each lozenge has 150 mg of elm bark which is a oral demulcent that is is meant to relieve the irritation of the inflamed mucous membrane.  The box is small but contains 24 lozenges. Were on cold 2 and still have the same original 2 boxes I bought last time.  Another great thing about these is that the packaging is 100% recyclable. Sweet!

Things we use that we already have in our kitchen.

Honey-If my girls are just tired of having cough drops, they love just a teaspoon of honey instead. It soothes their through and quiets their cough.

Tea-Caffeine free tea is a must in any home. We prefer loose leaf tea but will use tea bags as well.  My girls favorite is peppermint tea or lemon verbena(from my garden last year) with a teaspoon of organic raw honey.  Just make your favorite tea and drink it as hot as you can stand it.  The tea will break down so much of the mucus and your cough will go away so fast. It really is the quickest way to calm your cough.

Neti Pot-This is a new addition to our home. I picked up a pretty ceramic Neti Pot the last time the girls were sick. The Neti Pot has been around for centuries and is used for common colds, allergies and nasal congestion.  You simply use a mixture of all natural salt, baking soda and warm water. Fill the Neti Pot with this mixture, tilt your head one way, insert the Neti on the top nostril and let the mixture drain down one side of your nose to the other. Sounds a bit freaky but I swear by this thing. It helps me with my allergies and my girls love using it when they have colds.  These can be as cheap as $4.99 for a plastic one or about $15 for a pretty ceramic one like mine. Plastic one has to be hand washed in warm water but is pretty durable. The ceramic one needs to be handled carefully but can be put in the dishwasher or hand washed in hot water. Your call.

Neti Stik-This is something I just bought today and was thrilled.  Cost me $4.99 but can be taken anywhere with me because its the size of chapstick.  Its made by Himalalan Institute and is a aromatherapy inhaler.  Its filled with peppermint, eucalyptic, menthol and lavender oil.  Simply remove the cap, insert tip into nostril(mine nostril is small so I put up as much as I can..sorry tmi) and inhale softly.  It really does help you breath easier out of your  nose.

Daily Vitamins-I buy Trader Joe's all natural chew-able vitamins for my girls. They come in a honey bear type plastic container that is 100% recyclable and are all natural with no preservatives.  They only cost me $2.99 for 60 which is super cheap. These are not the gummy chew-able ones but the crunchy old school ones. When my kids are sick they get 2 a day.  I myself take a multi vitamin that I also picked up at Whole Foods in a very large glass container that can be recycled. I think it was $9.99 for around 100 of them.

Healthy eating-Morning food is usually oat meal or a piece of fruit. We avoid any milk products when there is any cough or congestion because the milk makes it worst. For lunch's its vegetable soup with some sort of grain. Dinner is always healthy vegetables with either a whole grain noodle or brown rice.  Since my girls are all vegetarians its literally no change for me who has to cook it all.  We just avoid milk when possible.  We drink lots of water and the only other thing would be juice. Orange juice is recommended because it has lots of vitamin C which also helps you get better.

Vapor Bath-We do not use any thing you buy from a store because they are usually filled with so many chemicals.  Instead I bought some essential oils and use them. Lavender and eucalyptus are all you need. Just add a few drops to hot water and you have a vapor bath that opens up their nasal passages and relax's them. Perfect right before bedtime.

Lots of Z's-Getting lots of rest is the best form of medicine. If you follow all the step's above then your body has everything it needs to fight off the cold naturally. But in order to do this, you need lots of rest.  If your body is stressed in any way, everything you do to get better will not work as well. It will take much longer to get better so save yourself some time and get plenty of sleep.  This means no caffeine at all. Yep, no coffee, soda, or energy drinks. And remember that most pain relievers have caffeine in them! Avoid caffeine all together.

I will try my best to keep up on blog but as you can see, I am pretty busy trying to get my kids all better and also try to avoid getting myself sick. This is not a easy task.  I also will be looking into making my own cough syrup. I am hoping that this a cheaper alternative and love the fact that I control what goes into it. Of course I will keep you posted. Wish me luck!

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