Monday, April 12, 2010

Walking Towards A Cure?

Don't worry I'm not soliciting donations right now. Maybe tomorrow.

I just have this tip that I can't keep to myself any more. I heard it a bunch of times before I believed it but I am now fully converted so I want to spread the love. And the petroleum jelly.

Right now, this very second, I have a layer of Vicks Vaporub on the bottoms of my feet.

I'm loving it!

I get allergies. It's the tree pollen. Those pretty buds? Want me curled on the couch in a fetal position begging for an auger and the courage to use it. They aren't the worst in the world, I'm not being hospitalized or anything, but they do suck donkey balls. My allergies manifest mostly as sinus pain and pressure. Occasionally I nearly choke but that's rare and fixable with getting out of the area and drinking some water. Or a margarita. I think I get that inflammation of the sinus tissue. Gross.

The headaches, though, are untouchable. I try to steer clear of decongestants for a lot of reasons. (My chronic dehydration, my sensitivity to the sleep aid in one kind, my high sensitivity to the uppers in the other, etc.) I've put Vicks on my face (topical analgesic!), I am a strong supporter of Fisherman's Friend lozenges, I use any steam I can get up to and including standing in my tiny bathroom with the shower blasting. In pretty short order I wind up with a pervasive muscle ache problem down my neck and along my shoulders. I think that before I realize the pain of the sinus problem my subconscious becomes aware of the fullness and that I alter the way I hold myself and carry tension in my head, neck and shoulders so I've got a double shot. Anyway, I was having trouble with one of these a few weeks ago and I put out a call on Facebook for any solution short of trepanning. OK, I may have said that trepanning would be welcome. It hurts. A lot. And I have a very low pain threshold.

A couple of people mentioned putting Vicks on the bottom of my feet (and socks over all, don't want you sticking to the floor). I had heard it before but couldn't see why it would work so I hadn't tried it. Seemed gross. (It is.) One Facebooky friend, though, explained that it has to do with the large pores of the feet sucking the eucalyptus (and probably the turpentine) into the system more quickly. That began to sound logical and I hate pain so I tried it. Huzzah!

It's not quick and it won't fix the ancillary muscle tension problems but it works wonders on the sinus issues. If you hate the smell of Vicks this will not be your favorite. I kind of like it, though. Smells like relief.

Next up? A little eucalyptus oil in the water of the neti pot. Pretty sure that's going to be a miracle, too.

What old wives' takes have you proved true?


  1. ohhhhhhh why have I never thought of the eucylyptus oil in the neti? I was at Moms all weekend and didn't take my neti...I am DYING to use it!!! hey. I maybe HAVE some of that oil in my med cabinet..ok. i'm going to check right now. i am TOTALLY doing that.

    btw, loveyou.

  2. Careful! I tried it last night and I overdid (I think) the euc oil. OWIE! Going to check on dosage with my friend who suggested it.

  3. turns out i had tee tree oil. i didn't try it...

  4. I use a straight saline solution in a squeeze bottle sinus rinse system. Works wonders for congestion and so easy my nine year old can do it! I'm going to try the Vicks, does it make your feet softer?

  5. Misti, turns out that tea tree oil is good, too. It's the antiseptic properties that are good for preventing/healing sinus infections. I did some research yesterday and found out that what we really want are hydrosols. Haven't been able to get my hands on a eucalyptus one yet, though. I'll keep you posted.

    Other Laura, I struggle with nosebleeds and dehydration and I felt as though the straight saline was drying me out a little too much. I wound up having an epic nosebleed in the wettest place in my apartment, the shower! So...I'm looking for an oil or something to help combat that dryness a tiny bit at least, while still relieving the swelling and pressure in my stupid sinuses. Also, YES! The super cool bonus is that you wind up with softer feet. I'm too lazy to regularly douse my cracked heels in Aquaphor so now I get the brilliant double whammy with Vicks!