Cool Weather, Cold and Flu season.

…stay healthy this year with a few simple tips. 

Whether you believe there is a season of illness or not, we are beginning to see many non-Covid respiratory illnesses come roaring back this year with schools in session and minimal to no masking all around town. Hang on to your hats and come get some salt therapy!

Here in San Diego, besides Covid-19, we’ve already had outbreaks of RSV and influenza. These are usually the most severe respiratory viruses of the cooler seasons and most likely to cause health concerns for babies and young children (unlike Covid-19). Luckily, influenza vaccines are available for families and infants down to 6 months of age. Not so with the rest of the normal fall/winter viruses. There are a myriad of families of viruses, including other corona viruses, that cause us headaches, stuffy noses, cough, drippy nose, and maybe even fevers. These can then set any of us up, and especially our young ones, for further illness like ear infections, pneumonia, or worse. 

Many preventative measures can be used to try and stay healthy:

*Number one is always Good Handwashing!!

*Consider masking up during the flu season… why not? It kept the flu down to a minimum for 2020-2021. A couple more months out of the year can’t hurt.

*SALT Therapy – treatments 1-2 times a week will help reduce infection burden in your nose, throat, sinuses and lungs before it can get a hold and cause illness. It’s great for those who already have chronic respiratory conditions like bronchitis, asthma, COPD, etc. It can also improve many skin conditions, like eczema which gets worse for many this time of year. Call us, or check out our website, or your MindBody App for availability under “appointments”.

*Air filters with HEPA or better filtering should reduce infectious particles in your home air from other sick people in the home. 

*Vitamin D is so important for our immune system at adequate levels. If you aren’t getting enough with the more limited sunshine, then consider a supplement. You can get too much vitamin D, but most of us in the US are insufficient (low) or deficient. 800 – 2000 IU (20-50mg) daily should do the trick. 

Already starting to feel sick? Here’s what I often recommend:

*Oregano oil – not for the faint of heart (or throat) … it burns, it burns! But I have yet to have an upper respiratory infection, especially a sore throat, that hasn’t responded almost immediately, including both my Covid-19 infections. It has antimicrobial (bug killing) powers against many viruses and bacteria. It is not a substitute for antibiotics, but may help you from needing them. It is not suitable for young children. 

*Vitamin D – if you haven’t already started it, then add it in or maybe double the dose just until you are well. 

*Vitamin C – Moderately high doses during your illness could assist your immune system. You’re not likely deficient unless you generally  eat only junk food, but during an illness it’s a lot like ammunition. You burn up a lot of it fighting off the infection.  Taking too much will just get released into the urine for a short time, but don’t take mega doses for long periods of time. 

*zinc – many of us are deficient in this nutrient. Some oral zinc lozenges may be beneficial both locally in the throat at reducing the virus and throughout our body for our immune function. Don’t use the nasal zinc. 

*Elderberry – Used for hundreds, if not thousands of years, this treat will be your best go to for little kids and picky adults for assistance in helping gently stimulate the immune system. It’s been studied with Covid-19 and not found to be harmful as an adjunct to illness or treatment. Elderberry syrup, gummies, and capsules are widely available but not all are created equal. You want to have a couple grams of elderberry “equivalent” each day. This is not always clear from the label, even when I read it. Follow the directions on the bottle. Getting some is better than none and you probably can’t overdose, but most are a very concentrated form (extracts and such). It’s one I use whenever I start to feel sick with a cold/flu.

*Honey – Honey can be used to help soothe a cough and is widely used and recognized as safe for children over 12 mo of age. Don’t use it under 12 months. Many products now contain honey as their anti-cough ingredient. The studies were done with a tbsp, yes tablespoon. I’m not sure that much is really necessary for the little ones.

*Umcka or umckaloabo – An African geranium, this type of flower has been used for untold generations to help people recover from the common respiratory ailments. It has antimicrobial properties and may help the immune system. I don’t have any specific dosages on this one, but you can find this cold medicine in many pharmacies and health food stores around San Diego. I’m going to try this next time I get sick.

*Supplements – There are a multitude of supplements that have combinations of many of these. We have some BioRay, Zarabee’s, and BioGaia samples and/or coupons that may be available through our store. 

Reach out to us for an appointment for a salt therapy appointment, or if you are having any problems or confusion managing this cold/flu season!

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