When you’re sick, you don’t feel like yourself. You will feel depressed, weak, and sometimes continue to feel unwell even after the symptoms subside. You may be afraid to get out of bed, get active, and clean the house. To help relieve the pain, make you feel better and feel less sick, taking care of yourself and your home is important.
Taking Care of Yourself
Rest. One of the quickest ways to get your body back in pain is to force yourself to be active again too soon. You may have a lot to do and have to miss school or work, but allowing your body to heal from illness is also very important. Don’t try to do too much until all of your symptoms have subsided. Until your condition is 100% improved, rest and sleep should be your top priority.
A healthy adult needs about 7.5-9 hours of sleep each day. People who are sick will need more sleep than this amount. Make sure to give yourself enough time to rest. You can do this by asking for leave from work or school, canceling plans, and/or going to bed early.
Keep the body hydrated. Illness can take a lot of things and leave you physically and mentally exhausted. Help make your body healthy again by drinking plenty of fluids. Be sure to drink 240 ml of water every few hours each day to replace fluids lost during illness. Also drink nutrient-dense drinks such as orange juice or soup stock several times each day, even after you feel better.
Eat healthy foods. Immediately eating a lot of food after illness can indeed make you gain weight. However, in order for your condition to be better, the body must be refreshed with the food and nutrients it needs. Since you’ve probably only eaten crackers, toast, or broth over the last few days or weeks, incorporate some nutritious, delicious foods into your diet again. Some tips that can be done:
Avoid foods rich in fat.
Instead of eating three times a day, eat smaller meals more frequently.
Try drinking a fruit smoothie once a day. This will help you digest many of the nutrients that are important to keep you active again.
Soups, especially chicken soup, tom yum , pho , miso soup , are great foods to reintroduce protein and vegetables into your diet.
Relieve muscle pain. Part of recovering from pain is dealing with associated symptoms such as muscle aches and pains. You may no longer cough often, but your back may still hurt. The best way to relieve the associated pain once the body begins to heal is with heat treatments, such as:
Relax with a bath. For added relaxation and restorative benefits, try adding 200 grams of Epsom salt or a few drops of a soothing, non-inflammatory essential oil such as eucalyptus, peppermint, or lavender.
Try using a heat pad to relieve pain in certain areas. For example, to relieve lower abdominal cramps after a stomach flu, heat it up and place the heat pad on your stomach.
Gently massage the affected area with pain relief ointment. Like a heat pad , apply the ointment on the affected area. For example, to relieve headaches, ointment can be applied to the temples. Be sure to wash your hands afterward as the skin will feel hot if you accidentally touch the ointment.
Do light exercise. Getting up and moving around a lot after an illness will help get the blood flowing and remove toxins from the body. However, wait until you are fully recovered and avoid intense exercise for at least 2-3 weeks after the illness. Start exercising again slowly, waiting up to a week after the illness before starting light exercise such as walking or jogging for short distances. You can also do exercises such as bikram yoga which will make you sweat and expel any remaining toxins or congestion. However, make sure that your body is well hydrated!
Keep skin moist. When you are sick, your appearance can be affected. Sneezing, coughing and mucus can make the skin red. After the inside of the body is treated, start paying attention to your skin. Buy a moisturizer that contains lanolin and apply it to areas like the nose to relieve sore, dry skin. Also consider buying a lip balm that contains ingredients like coconut oil or argan oil as these are great for chapped lips.
Change your bed sheets. Since we spend most of our time in bed when we are sick, cleaning the sheets should be a top priority. Getting rid of bacteria in the bed is also important because when you are sick, you sweat more and the sheets are full of unhealthy germs. Remove all bedding, including pillowcases, and wash in hot water and detergent. Before washing, clean any existing stains with a stain-removing product. Leave the mattress for a few hours before covering it with new sheets.
Clean the bathroom thoroughly. Regardless of the type of illness you have, you are likely to spend a lot of time dealing with flu symptoms (such as grabbing a tissue or throwing up) in the bathroom. Another top priority to do after an illness is to clean the bathroom. Some tips for doing so are:
Wash towels, mats, bathrobes, or other fabrics in hot water and detergent.
Clean all surfaces, especially tables and toilets. You can use commercially available cleaning products or make your own by mixing water with pure alcohol or vinegar which contains 6% acetic acid in a 1:1 ratio.
Empty and clean the trash can with a disinfectant.
Replace or soak the toothbrush in hydrogen peroxide for 30 minutes to kill any bacteria on the toothbrush.
When you’re done, throw away the sponge or wash the rag you used to wipe it.
Clean the kitchen. You may not use the kitchen when you are sick. However, the germs left behind can transmit the disease to other people. Clean your kitchen with disinfectant wipes, cleaning products, or a household disinfectant (water mixed with pure alcohol or vinegar containing 6% acetic acid in a ratio of 1:1). The main places in the kitchen that must be cleaned:
Pantry handles, cupboards and drawers
Clean any other areas you touch. It’s hard to remember all the places in the house you’ve touched when you’re sick, but it’s important to clean everything you might have touched. This will help keep you healthy and reduce the risk of disease transmission. Be sure to use a disinfectant product that is safe for use on a variety of surfaces, such as electronics. In addition to the areas already mentioned, other common touch points in the home are:
Drawer handles and cupboards in the bathroom
Electronic objects such as laptops, cell phones, landlines, TV remotes , and computer keyboards and mice.
Wash all the clothes you wear when you are sick. Once your bed, bathroom, kitchen, and anything you might touch are clean, clean up the last source of germs: the clothes you’re wearing. Wash any pajamas, sweaters, and casual clothes you’ve worn over the past few days or weeks in hot water and detergent. This is to ensure that all bacteria have been eradicated and the condition will become healthier and cleaner.
Let the air into the house. After covering the windows and curtains when you are sick, you can let the air flow into the house. Open the windows and let some fresh air enter your home. Changes in air conditions will also remove dust particles and make you feel more refreshed and energized. If the weather is very cold, do this step in just 1-2 minutes. Otherwise, you can keep the window open as long as you want.