Saturday, February 19, 2011

Cold or Alergies? Here's a Good, Semi-Natural Treatment

An Effective, Semi-Natural Cold or Allergy Treatment
For the past  2 months, I've had an ongoing cold or allergies; the funny thing is that since I've moved to Playa del Carmen, a nice sunny, warm beachfront town, both have been noticeably worse than either in central Mexico or in Canada.  And, on top of that, my allergies seem surprisingly similar to a cold.  The very few times I've gone to the doctor, it's always turned out to be allergies, even though EVERYTHING about it feels like a cold.

This morning my 3-year-old son woke me up at 6:30, and I had a runny nose, I was sneezing and had a headache, and I had to blow my nose every 3 minutes.  10 minutes later, the baby was crying and wanted to eat.  (Saturday is my wife's only precious sleep-in day during the whole week, so it's out of the question to take that away from her.)

I felt like closing myself into a dark, quiet room to just forget about the world.  I thought about heading to the drugstore for allergy medicine, but then I decided to try our alternative approach first.  The last time my family came from Canada, my dad had given us a bottle of tea tree oil as a natural treatment for ticks on our dog. (Ticks are very, very common here in the jungle, and all dogs get them if they are not treated.  Most people use a horrible chemical that cannot be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women, or anyone under the age of 19.  The tea tree oil actually works very, very well - better than the chemical.)

A few months ago, reading the natural health booklet that came with it, I realized that it had lots of uses, including treating the common cold. I found it also works for allergies.  So, this morning, this is how I treated my allergies/cold or whatever it is:

  • Tea Tree Oil - I heated a pot of water until it was steaming very well, and added 10 drops of tea tree oil.  I place a towel over my head and leaned over the steaming pot inhaling the vapor of the oil.  The relief in my nose was almost instant.
  • Hot Tea -  I used Tetley Orange Pekoe tea, but I would normally us an herbal tea - we've run out.  I prepared it while I was heating the water, so I could enjoy it immediately after the tea tree oil.
  • Paracetamol - I took one tablet to help with the headache.  The only not natural part of my treatment.  This is still much better than going to the doctor here; most doctors (although most certainly not all) in Mexico tend to way over medicate; I'm highly suspicious an hesitant when it comes to over-medication.  We've found 2 doctors who are very conservative about medicine, and give treatments (which include only small amounts of medicine if any) whic, as we suspected, are usually much more successful.  I also believe in generics, most of the time.  Tylenol costs about 10 times as much, and does the same thing.

I probably could have done without the paracetamol, but on the whole the treatment was successful.  Afterwards, I just felt a little sleepy, but otherwise fine.  The rest of the morning was a very relaxing, comfortable Saturday morning.

To read more about my experience with healthcare and medicine in Mexico, read:

1 comment:

  1. Hey Jacob! Where can I get this Tea Tree? Luka my dog gets a lot of tics because we live close to the woods, and I do not like to apply on her the chemicals...

    About your allergies, I know a herb called "Echinacea" is very good. Ask a naturist specialist first.

    Good Luck to you guys! Hope you can get more sleep in the future!