Sunday, December 12, 2010

A busy weekend

Sweet Daughter and I went to Williamsburg this weekend to do some clothing fittings. Both for me to fit, and to be fit. I helped Al with reworking machine-sewn smock. I did a fitting muslin for another banyan, worked on converting a set of trousers to a pair of breeches, and picked up the materials and got fit for a waistcoat and riding jacket for a very ambitious project that I hope to have done in time for Military Through the Ages at Jamestown in March. I have a horrible head cold, so I wasn’t in the best shape. Luckily, the group of people that had assembled were all phenomenally helpful with taking SD swimming and otherwise keeping her entertained, and helping out in general. Thanks to Ruth, my wig for said riding habit outfit is mostly done, too. Much socializing took place which included wonderful food and drink. All that, and hotel I stayed at didn’t accost me with timeshare salesmen when I walked in. And the best part? It’s the same one I stayed at last October. They said they’d get rid of them, and they did.

Now, if I can get the sinuses to unclog, the general congestion to go away, and the hacking cough to stop, I might actually be able to get to work on some of this stuff.


  1. I have GERD - esophageal reflux disease. Consequently I have chronic sinusitis / GERD is the most common cause of chronic sinusitis.

    I have several tiers of response for sinus infections and colds.

    1) In the first days, echinacea and golden seal extract. These are useful to 'kick start' the immune system.

    2) Saline nasal mist. Unmedicated, this is about as aggressive, health treatment wise, as washing the hands with soap and water. There are also similarities in what it does and how it works - moisturizes and sanitizes the sinus membranes.

    Inhale deeply as you spray into the nostril, keeping the actual bottle out of the nostril. The moving air gets the mist where it needs to go, not shoving the nozzle up the nostril.

    My MD physician advised: Twice in each side, once an hour, and blow. This will clear up to a sinus infection without antibiotics, and help with colds and allergies.

    That has been my experience. The salt makes the mist gentle on the tender sinus tissues, and kills bacteria. And causes the sinuses to flush, washing away the viruses that continue the re-infection that delays getting better faster.

    Surprisingly, the mist works really well when completely congested, as well as addressing dry cough and sore throat, which are caused by caustic sinus 'drainage'.

    Saline nasal mist is Modern Medicine's answer to the ancient Indian practice of the neti wash. You can now buy your own neti pot at most drug stores. A friend gave me a recipe, 1 c. warm water, 1/8 tsp. baking soda, 1/8 *non-iodized* salt. Unlike the saline nasal mist, the neti pot is difficult to use comfortably in public, as you pour water up your nose in the appropriate, disciplined fashion. Get good directions. With your head tilted to one side, and chin raised, the water should flush through the upper nostril to the throat, where you dribble the water into the sink. Then, with the chin lowered, the water exits through the lower nostril. This cleanses almost all of the affected surfaces, especially when you repeat with the head tilted to raise the other nostril.

    Saline nasal mist works similarly to chicken soup. The fats from chicken soup irritate the sinuses, causing them to flush - and driving the re-infecting virus cluster away from the sinus membranes. So don't count on fat-free chicken soup to be helpful - it is just another warm comfort food, and won't intervene with the air-borne virus.

    The saline nasal mist is inexpensive, but you cannot, cannot, cannot share with anyone else, without sharing infections, etc. As SNL had it, "You can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can't pick your friends' .."

    My next level of response is Alka Selzer Plus cold and allergy. It is non-recreational, just seems to work. And Robitussin DM (the simple expectorant version). Or the store-brand equivalents.

    Somewhere in there I usually get a bunch of green decaff tea, or Celestial Seasonings Honey Lemon Ginseng tea. Both usually come well equipped in a large mug with honey.

    You will want to increase fiber while experiencing a Mucous Event. Oatmeal, apple skins are good. One of the best is psyllium husk - the part that does you some good when you take the sugar and flavor out of Metamucil. Psyllium husk shines in conveying excess mucous from the body, as well as being high in soluble fiber like apple skins. Soluble fiber passes into the blood stream, and scavenges toxins from the cells. Insoluble fiber stays in the gut and . . ahem, 'keeps things moving'.

    As you recover, the occasional yogurt will help restore a healthy natural bioflora state in your gut, to resume healthy indigestion as soon as possible. Many meds and fevers can challenge the body's ability to maintain a good balance in the gut.

    Um, to summarize - I hope you get better soon!

  2. Oops. "resume healthy indigestion" should have been "resume healthy digestion".

  3. One advantage of a saline nasal mist/spray is that, being unmedicated, it is "legal" for use where self-medicating might be an issue, i.e., flight crew.