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And sound health and wellness preparedness should also be something tackled by local communities as "a collective" and localized effort and never individually. So, whether dealing with seasonal cold and flu symptoms or chest pain with coughing, or the emerging novel coronavirus COVID-19; a community's wellness preparedness should start and stay an involved effort in community awareness.
As such, home remedies and other home treatment "secrets" to prevent and treat friends and family should be shared and we hope the ones that follow will help anyone in need and welcome even more contributions to add to and build upon.
As part of a bad cold or flu, and sometimes lasting for weeks, a whooping cough or dry cough is just the absolute worst anyone can experience. And despite over-the-counter medication like cough suppressant, Halls, etc. there are some well-kept home remedy techniques that work and help—but that most have either not tried or have not heard of like these home treatments and observations:
Health and Wellness Home Remedies for Cough and Flu in Florida
1. Do not wear a sweatshirt i.e., activewear.
Sometimes as congestion hits the chest, the first reaction is to put on a sweatshirt and unbeknown to many; putting on heat removing activewear. However, many brands of sweatshirts are more like activewear that tends to pull heat away from the body. Instead, wear a thermal undershirt that retains heat. Try it and you'll see the cough begin to come under control a bit more and consistently when you swap out these garments.
2. The body feels 'under attack' when it feels wind.
On the fourth day into a recovery from a bad cold and cough, we ventured out thinking things were getting better. We then got in the car, turned it on and drove away with the AC unit blowing cool ventilation. Needless to say, by the end of the trip we saw a resurgence of the cough in the form of a cough attack that lasted well into the night. Simply, the body, still in "repair" mode, didn't appreciate the wind effect and started producing phlegm again from its auto-immune response to "fight" off the "invaders."
Note: Do not turn on the fans at home either when you have a cough or just recovering because the oscillation creates the same effect. In other words, no wind. And if you must have the air on in the car because you can't completely shut the fan off, then set it to the lowest blower setting.
3. The night air betrays you.
We found that during the day time hours, we felt "better," when dealing with a cold or flu; only to have the evening hours bring in long and lasting coughing spells that go well into the night. So contrary to what we normally do with the thermostat when we are well; move the thermostat to 78 degrees and sleep away from the walls and headboard—on the other end of the bed. Why? Because as the colder air of the night hits the walls of the house, the house becomes colder and the headboard is usually touching or close up against the walls and transfers the cold right over.
4. Attack the cough during the day.
As the daytime hours provide some relief, now is the time to counter-attack the cough and help get it under control and increase your chances of eradicating it. Make yourself a Chamomile tea (because it's non-caffeinated and calms you) with raw honey, lime juice, a pinch of salt (for electrolyte recovery) and a couple ounces of pineapple juice (which contain bromelain) every two hours. This provides a constant heat source to the chest as opposed to drinking a tea only when coughing.
5. Immerse the body when feeling chest pain when coughing.
If the congestion gets way out of hand (super tight chest) fill the bathtub with hot water only and then immerse yourself to your neck and stay in there for at least 25 mins; preferably 30. When you come out you'll be slightly reddish and a bit dizzy but dry yourself and put on a dry cotton shirt and thermal quickly. This technique warms up your core like nothing else; loosening the chest right up and giving you a chance to reset.
6. Be aware of and eliminate 'hidden' humidity.
Rarely thought of, a night time lasting cough can be attributed to the fact that the person, although bundled, is resting on a humid shirt. Also, each time you drink a tea or even after the hot water immersion, your body will begin to sweat as it should. However, you need to change out your shirt under the thermal each and every time they get damp. And use only pure cotton inside shirts under the thermal undershirt and change them out each and every time you feel the dampness. Note: This single home remedy can make the difference for so many with out-of-control coughs.
7. Cough suppressant in pill form.
There are a lot of folks that treat coughs in many other ways and have not (for whatever reason) heard of the mucoactive drug Guaifenesin or, "cough pill" despite its invention circa 1952. Guaifenesin, the only legally marketed expectorant, works by drawing water into the bronchi in our lungs, thereby thinning out the phlegm and making it easier to expel heavy mucus and making it easier to breathe.
For adults Guaifenesin comes in a 100 to 1200 mg dose and should be, according to the directions (or ask your Doctor), taken every 4 to 6 hours. For kids over 6, Guaifenesin does come in a liquid form but is usually found in children's versions and usually contains 100 mg. It is the only true cough pill out there, but it cannot handle and stop a cough by itself and needs the assistance of the other remedies.
Wear a thermal over dry cotton shirts always and avoid the damp chest effect. Night air betrays you so use the day to attack the cough hard. Soak in a hot water only bath to loosen stubborn core congestion by heating the body from within (and think of it as heating the body at the core where the lung areas need it most). Avoid wind inside and outside of the home. Each time you feel it you'll cough, so stay out of it.
The tea needs chamomile to calm your body from the cough exhaustion, the lemon to anti-oxidize you, the honey and pineapple as natural bromelain agents and the salt to restore your minerals. Take guaifenesin only remedies but remember that during the medicine periods, the cough is only suppressed so when coming off it, expect to cough phlegm which is normal. The loosened phlegm relieves the cough while your body uses all the other remedies to collectively heal itself.
The body knows what to do. And helping it by "staging" the assistive remedies only help to increase a speedier recovery.
Whether it is for hurricane preparedness OR wellness preparedness for a new and novel type of influenza; community health and wellness exploitations occur and it is simply a byproduct of fear and avarice and a social fallback to what Thomas Hobbes described as a State of Nature where a person is always either in a state of self-preservation or self-promotion.
And Floridians sees this repeatedly during hurricane preparedness with store shelves emptying out completely of vital supplies like water, batteries and canned food items. And with SARS Coronavirus COVAD-19 / SARS-CoV-2 concerns, everyday items like hand sanitizer and Isopropyl alcohol surge in prices to exploitation pricing levels for those items—in addition to the water, batteries and canned food items.
For example, a 10-ounce bottle of hand sanitizer normally available for $3 or $4 dollars is completely stripped out of every available store shelf and is then available on eBay for $55. Likewise, a $1 or $2 bottle of Isopropyl alcohol cannot be found on store shelves and is also completely unavailable on Amazon.
This is disappointing of course as most folks are not aware that the average store supplies can only accommodate a 3-day supply for each person; even if everyone was able to get their hands on some of the items. We learned this as it was explained by a Walgreens associate that stated that stores "face" their shelves products every evening to make the shelves look full; creating a false perception that store isles are "full" in the first place—which they never are.
Regardless, urgent care for flu and flu care readiness still needs to be addressed and it is not what a situation is, but how we handle it.
Community Wellness Weaponized - Supportive Therapy Readiness First
First, hand sanitizer cannot prevent someone from catching the flu virus if the person breaths in the particles coughed up by an infected person—even if the infected person has left the area or immediate proximity.
Second, the virus expelled by a contaminated person through cough and sneezing or left by direct contact will land or stay on surfaces which, any passing hand can pick up contamination and is then transmitted when that healthy person then touches their nose, eyes or mouth.
Third, the emphasis is usually placed on contact prevention when it should be placed on treatment and supportive therapy. This is because most persons will put the emphasis on prevention like purchasing hand sanitizer and Lysol style disinfectants and miss the opportunity to also get the essential items necessary IN CASE OF infection. For example, while everyone makes a run for the face masks, the teas, lime juice, raw honey, VapoRub, pineapple juice etc. are not thought of but which will become very essential in the treatment and supportive therapy to follow.
In general, if a flu virus is airborne or highly contagious and has no vaccine; then the emphasis should be specifically on palliative intent first with contact prevention a close second. Palliative intent and treatment (not to be confused with palliative care which is end of life care) is the supportive therapy emphasis on relieving symptoms and improving the quality of life of a person while their body does what needs to be done to fight off the infectious invader.
Staying Proactive and Supportive Therapy Focused for Flu in Florida
So weaponize your palliative treatment strategy for any flu variant by having the essentials to help treat infection and provide the best supportive therapy possible. For example, maintain a reasonable supply on hand of:
Cough suppressants in both adult pill form and children liquid doses.
Non-caffeinated teas like Chamomile
Canned pineapple juice or orange juice concentrate
Immune boosting products like Emergenc-C
Raw and real honey
Real limes or lime juice concentrate
Humidifier with menthol petrolatum-based gel (i.e., VapoRub)
Cotton shirts to swap out damp ones
Thermal undershirts to retain heat
Electrolyte delivering hydration products (liquid or powder packets)
Sanitizing and sterilizing unit to treat heavy contact devices like phones
Face masks for infected persons to keep them from dispersing infection
Maintain canned and dried foods in addition and separate to your regular pantry
Most Important: Don't wait for an emergency. Make them a regular item on your weekly grocery list; picking up one here and there until you have a responsible reserve on hand—and avoid the run on stores and shelf "facing" dilemma experienced by everyone else.
Community Wellness Organized - Using the Power of the Collective Again
The last 15 minutes of a movie production called Prepper illustrates what we've been saying for years. And that is that neighbors don't talk to each other anymore. Albert Einstein's theory of relativity states that the closer and larger an object is, the greater it's influence. However, as close as we are as Americans to our neighbors—being just a few feet away and resolute to even include a Homeowners Association in most communities—we continue to fail at closing the gap on knowing our neighbors.
Because the greatest asset one has is the people closest to them. Think about it: If a catastrophe does occur and emergency response cannot get to everyone as quickly as possible; where does one turn? Yes, a person can prepare individually but nothing brings resources together faster than the community gathering and deciding collectively what resources they have available and who needs to be doing what and where.
Now, this may seem farfetched for some but Jeff Bezos does not run Amazon alone any more than a roof is removed and installed individually by Drew Calloway alone.
"Well do it with what we have right here. We start with this group. This one group of neighbors. We get to know each other. We take care of each other. We watch out for each other. That's how we do it. Look, when we're hid in our homes; we are individuals. We are weak. But in the open; just like this. We are strong. We take everything we know; from skills, talents, equipment, supplies that each of us have and we utilize that.
The way I see it; we either recognize individual houses with single-family lives alone. Or, we view it in the way it really is. A neighborhood. A community. A country of people standing together.
It doesn't matter if there is a life-threatening virus, a tornado, economic collapse or nothing at all. What matters is that we refuse to live in fear. Are we individuals? Or are we a community?"
Or what is community wellness and health or any home remedies for cough, flu or anything else for if one does not think about why we've managed to make it this far?
'Do What Needs To Get Done' So You Don't Have To 'Do What You Have To Do'
Initiate a proactive strategy to ensure you and your family has what you'll need both for prevention and for supportive therapy. Do the best you can and reach out to those persons familial to you for ideas.
Next, get involved with your direct community before and ahead of an emergency. Knock on a neighbor’s door and have a conversation. Almost every subdivision in America has that one person that knows everybody.
Finally, stay in tune on updates and follow through on things through some additional resources like those listed below:
Nextdoor.com - connect with your community and neighbors.
Coronavirus Compare With The Flu - Informative
CDC - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
WHO - World Health Organization
Thank you for taking the time to read our health and wellness page with some home remedies for cough and flu in Florida. Please Contact Us if you have additional contributing information to share that can benefit everyone.