AN INSIDERS LOOK AT HOW HOLISTIC PRACTITIONERS HANDLE THE COMMON COLD
Welp, it happened. I caught a cold over the Thanksgiving holiday. How did this happen? Two words: Wind. Points.
Wind Points are the points on your neck and shoulders that leave you vulnerable to catching cold according to Chinese medicine, and if you don't cover them up we always warn - you gonna get it! Honestly this whole topic deserves its own post to explain it, but I will save that for another time. For now, let's just focus on what happened.
I locked myself out of my house without my coat and had to walk to a friends with all my wind points exposed. I should have known what would happen. Laying in bed that night I had a tickle in my throat and started sneezing up a storm. Thinking it was just allergies I took my Pe Min Kan Wan, grabbed a big glass of water by the bed, and went to sleep. When I woke up, things were more or less the same, so I took more herbs and went to Thanksgiving.
Day 1 - Unfortunately, things were not more or less the same. I started to get a headache and had trouble regulating my temperature. I skipped out early, and spent the rest of the day resting and watching movies - taking more herbs, still trying to convince myself it was just allergies. It was not.
Day 2 - Friday morning it became clear that I was not okay as I was starting to develop a mild cough. This was my first indication that things were getting worse, but honestly that tickle in my throat the night before should have been the first warning. Why oh why don't I listen to myself?! Doctors make the worst patients. For real though.
Ok, time to buckle down and fight this thing. Luckily I had taken off for the holiday and wouldn't have any patient until Monday. I had three days to knock this cold out. My symptoms were hot flashing and sweating, cough with sputum, congestion, and fatigue. I wasn't having chills or nausea and vomiting, so feels like its something I can handle. Game plan:
Day 3 - Saturday morning I wake up. Things are both better and worse. No more congestion or sneezing, but things have moved down into my chest. The cough isn't that bad, but when I do cough, dark green crud comes out. Better out than in, though, and I spit it up all day long. I repeat steps 1-4, taking my herbs, my vitamins, drinking my herbal tea and water, loading up on soup, staying in bed and not exerting myself. Being the holidays, the sweet people in my life keep dropping by with soup and tacos, so I am well fed :) By the end of the day I feel pretty good. Black Pumas are playing tonight and I really want to go. I can totally do it. BUUUUUUUT. I don't. I send my ticket off and curl up to binge Watchmen. Le sigh.
Day 4 - Sunday. I feel pretty damn okay. Still coughing up green sh*t but it's not as much and my throat isn't as sore. I ease up on vitamins and herbs, only taking a few doses throughout the day. I still rest and stay inside. Tomorrow is a work day and got patients to treat!
Today is Day 5, Monday. And here I am at work. Still have the tiniest of coughs, but I feel great other than that. Took the dog on a long walk this morning to make sure I was up for the day. Everything is A-OK!
Moral of the story, cover your head and neck when you're outside! I hope this insight into how I handle a cold helps y'all if and when you face the same situation. I was super lucky it happened over the holiday, and not during a busy week of patients! Comment your tips below on how you either avoid a cold or knock it out as fast as possible!
Stay healthy, friends!
Bret Kyle Rogers, L.Ac.
Texas based acupuncturist, qigong teacher, and herbalist demystifying Chinese medicine. The author frequently links to Amazon.com for specific products. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases and appreciate your business!