Cold and flu season is here, and there are few things more disheartening than being unable to sleep well when you're sick. You need good sleep to recover from illness, but often times the symptoms of a cold, the flu, or allergies can leave you tossing and turning all night. Not getting enough sleep makes it harder for your body to fight sickness, so we've compiled a list of natural ways for you to get better sleep when you're feeling under the weather.
Eat and drink hot foods and beverages. We're all familiar with mom's old chicken soup remedy, and often times a specific cold-curing chicken soup recipe has been handed down for generations. However, the chicken soup remedy is more than just an old wives tale! Studies show that hot foods like soups are very effective for helping to clear sinuses and soothe a sore throat. As an added bonus, chicken soup is good for you and provides the nourishment necessary for your health to improve! For an added kick, add a little cayenne pepper to your soup. Cayenne is very healthy for you, and the spiciness helps to clear your sinuses. It is also helpful to drink hot, decaffeinated teas prior to bed.
Take a hot shower. First hot foods, now a hot shower - are you noticing a theme? A key component to effectively clearing a cold from your head is heat. A warm compress over your eyes eases sinus pressure, hot food and drink soothe a sore throat, and the steam from a hot shower helps your sinuses to drain and de-congest. Remember, heat is key! In contrast, cold things actually increase congestion.
Properly elevate your head. It is a popular belief that elevating your head eases congestion. A common way to achieve this is by propping your head with many pillows. However, improperly elevating your head can incline your neck at an angle which makes it difficult for you breathe properly, despite any draining of congestion. An effective way to elevate your head while you sleep is to set your bed at an incline of about six inches, either by propping books under the two legs at the head of your bed, or by putting pillows under your mattress.
Being sick can make you feel miserable and exhausted, and the last thing you need when ill is to get poor sleep! What are some things that you do to help you sleep better when you're sick?