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Home remedies to treat winter ailments

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With the onset of winter you can expect to be confronted with a variety of winter ailments.

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The human body takes time to adjust to any kind of change, whether it is a change in diet, a change in geography, or a change in temperature and climate. Every time the season changes, our body takes time to get accustomed to it, giving infections an opportunity to attack it.

During this period of adjustment to the changing season, the body’s immunity tends to be low and, therefore, the body is susceptible to attacks from viruses and bacteria.

As soon as the body experiences a drop in the external temperature, the process to get accustomed to the new climate begins. This is the time when most people start to suffer from ailments like the common cold, coughs, sore throats and the flu.

Some of the other common winter ailments include dry and itchy skin, seasonal allergies, chest congestion and runny noses.

People suffering from diseases like arthritis and asthma suffer even more as their symptoms aggravate greatly during this period of winters. Here’s what can be done to prepare for the approaching season and keep those winter ailments at bay.

A majority of the winter ailments occur due to a weak immune system and flagging health. A strong immune system can not only shield the body against common ailments and infections, but also ward off other, more serious disorders and diseases.

The immune system can be kept healthy by eating good, healthy food. A balanced meal can help a person keep fit. Taking plenty of rest and exposing the body to adequate sunlight can also improve immunity.

It is important to prepare the body well in advance for a change in the season. It is more important, however, to be logistically prepared for the changing season.

A lot of people fall prey to the changing weather because they are ill-prepared for it. It gets quite chilly in the night and, therefore, adequate measures should be taken to keep the body warm. Make sure that your air conditioning and other heating devices are in proper working order and warm clothes should be prepared well in advance.

The cold and dry weather tends to dry the skin more readily. Dry skin may crack and chap to form sores. It is better to drink lots of water and use water based moisturisers to keep the skin hydrated and prevent drying. Natural oils like jojoba, coconut, and avocado oils are great when smeared on the body.

They can help soothe the skin and should be included in daily grooming routine during winters.

Plenty of nutrition can help take care of both your health and your skin. Vitamins like vitamin C help boost immunity. Vitamin C can also help prevent common cold and flu.

Common winter ailments and how to treat them

From winter allergies to winter depression, and circulatory disorders to colds, the list of winter ailments is endless, with coughs, flu, sinusitis, arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, chilblains and hypothermia, being among the most common and troublesome conditions of the season.

The idea is not to bog you down with a list of ailments, but to make you more aware about these and help you on with the right winter care. Armed with the knowledge and tips, you are sure to know more about winter health, the right winter food and winter herbs to help you remain healthy.

Seasonal Affective disorder
Shorter winter days can induce the Seasonal Affective disorder. Symptoms include depression and lethargy. This happens because of shortened days, grey weather, cold temperatures and lack of sunshine. Better lighting indoors ang getting adequate sunlight can be solutions to cope with SAD.

Breathing Difficulty
Since the air molecules in winter become thinner, this leads to breathing problems like asthma. The way to take care of yourself is by wearing layers of warm clothing and scarves this will warm the air molecules before they enter your body.

Colds
Most of us have suffered from the common cold. The symptoms include itchy eyes, runny nose and sneezing. Generally, colds last for a week, and to prevent yourself from feeling that miserable you can do steam inhalations, gargle with saline water, drink hot spiced tea, and tea made with an extract of basil, peppercorn and ginger. You can consult a doctor for conventional medicines and an herbal practitioner for the right winter herbs.

Sore throat
At most times, colds are accompanied with sore throats. The symptoms include an itchy, scratchy feeling in the throat, trouble swallowing, sneezing, and runny nose. For this, try herbal teas, gargling and medicines recommended by your physician. Rest and a lot of sleep will help you heal better.

Coughs
Dry cough or a cough that throws up sputum is common during winters. Coughs are caused because of problems in the lungs, or the respiratory passages. While there are plenty of reliable cough syrups and throat drops to cease coughing, almost all have side effects. Instead opt for natural remedies and herbal remedies like honey and ginger or brandy.

Sinusitis
This is caused when the sinuses are inflamed. Symptoms include a blocked-up feeling, pain in the forehead or face, fever and even giddiness. This can be cured with rest and medicines. You must also take hot steams with warm water mixed with eucalyptus oil.

Influenza
The flu strikes ever so often during winters. The symptoms include fever, headache, sneezing, runny nose and eyes, cough and an overall miserable feeling. Apart from taking medicines prescribed by a doctor, you must drink hot beverages, teas flavoured with medicinal herbs like Basil and ginger, and get adequate rest.

Others
Winters can also trigger of arthritis attacks, make rheumatoid arthritis worse, cause chilblains, frostbite, circulatory problems, and in worst case scenarios, even hypothermia. Most of these can be prevented by staying active and warm by wearing layers of warm clothing and keeping your home heated.

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