SELF-CARE IN COLD & FLU SEASON
Here are some suggestions for staying healthy during the winter months. Most products can be obtained from health food stores, on line, or a local Medicine Shoppe. You can get information about all of them on line before deciding to use any of these products.
COLDS: The best remedy I have found is an herbal product called Kold Kare. Take the first tablet as soon as you notice any symptoms; it is also useful for allergies and sinus headaches.
This product contains an herb, andrographiss, so you should check with your health care provider to determine if there might be any interactions with other medications you are taking. http://www.karenherbs.com/kold_kare.htm
FLU: Oscillococcinum is a homeopathic remedy. Take at the first sign of the flu. (In my household we keep at least two packages at hand since it is most effective if taken right away; and if you have the flu who feels like driving anywhere?) Because this is a homeopathic remedy, it can be taken safely in conjuncton with any other medication.
COUGHS: Another homeopathic preparation, Chestal, is safe enough for children over 2. The cough might get a bit worse right after taking the Chestal but will subside soon afterward. It has a honey base so it is easy for kids to take.
SINUS CONGESTION: When a sinus headache hits, relief is only a hot, moistened washcloth away. Hold the cloth over your sinuses on and off for at least 5 minutes. Also effective is a euclyptus inhaler, or a sinus irrigation using a saline solution or one that contains eucalyptus (Alkalol)-the directions are on the box of the nasal irrigation tube. Sounds gross but it works very well. Kold Kare is also effective. Of course, if your sinuses have become infected you may need a prescription for an antibiotic. This site has great directions: http://altmedicine.about.com/cs/allergiesasthma/a/SinusIrrigation.htm
Don’t forget Vitamin C and Ecineacea with Goldenseal-(tablets or liquidfor help with all the above. Ecinacea should only be taken for the duration of symptoms, plus an addition 48 hour if there has been a serious infection.
Taking relatively large doses of VItamin D, in a gel capsule or in a liquid suspension, have been found to both reduce inflammation as well as significantly boost the immune system. Most people do well on 1-2,000 international units a day.
Joan is delighted to announce that she is moving her Carlisle office
to 614 South Hanover Stree, Carlisle. Please feel free to call her if
you would like to come over and either do a neurofeedbackl demo or
have a tour of the new space. Her phone number is the same, 717 258 5915.
Here is a site that has a lot of information about a new concept in
psychology that you might enjoy-
Check out the new Neurofeedback links on the resources page!
Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome-Free CD available
A brief (twenty minute) CD on PTSD is available for shipping and postage charges of $10.
This CD describes the signs and symptoms of PTSD, an
overview of what this syndrome is all about. The printed material provides information about books and web sites that have additional information. The text of the CD and the additional material are available on the Resources page of this site.*
"A crisis is something that
simply can't be ignored."
Some thoughts on personal crises...
Our assumptions are invisible to us, operating below our level of awareness. One common assumption is that when a crisis hits, the best we can do is cope and get through it. As so beautifully expressed in the "Thought for the Season " by Blaize Clement, we have other options when it comes to dealing with a crisis.
A great definition of crisis is a situation that simply can not be ignored-the house is on fire, you are fired from your job, or someone you love is diagnosed with a terminal cancer-things that demand our attention right now.
Some therapists, myself included, have this perverse view that a really good crisis can be used, forces us, gives us the opportunity, to take a look at assumptions that have formed a kind of scaffolding in our lives.
For example, a woman who was a client of mine many years ago came to see me in the midst of an overwhelming crisis. She had spent most of her life taking care of and worrying about others-her siblings, mother, and her own children and husband. A crisis associated with her grown son's irresponsibility absorbed her every waking hour. While he served his jail term, she worked tirelessly with attorneys, counselors and others to see if her son could reclaim his life.
She came to me for help because she couldn't sleep, had lost about 20 pounds and was more and more estranged from her husband. Her professional training and experience in health care also added to her overall stress level, as she had a tendency to take many patients' problems home with her. She was worried that she was losing her mind.
Her family doctor had prescribed an antidepressant, which she said wasn't helping much.
She and I reviewed her childhood pattern of being expected to function as a sort of Cinderella in her home as a girl, subject to her father's beatings if she refused or tried to rebel. Her mother, who was chronically physically and emotionally disabled, had retreated to a passive mode through most of the client's life.
I assured her that I didn't think she was losing her mind, but rather that her circuits were overloaded. She laughed and said she was thinking of adding more circuit capacity, but couldn't figure out how to do that. I replied that I thought she should think about voluntarily reducing her capacity, and wondered to her about why it was that she was so willing to take so much responsibility for other people. It was easy for her and I to connect this pattern of over functioning in her adult life to the Cinderella pattern of her childhood.
To summarize the focus of the therapy, we began to reevaluate her basic assumption that her job in the world is to take care of others, even to the point of carrying responsibility for her son's embezzlement and subsequent jail term.
As she became more objective and critical of this assumption, she began to change several behaviors that had previously created an enormous overload for her. She stated on many occasions that she just couldn't believe that there is another way to think about how to relate to others. But as she shifted her thinking and behavior she commented that if it hadn't been for the "last straw", her son's conviction and incarceration, she might still be trying to take care of everyone but herself.
In this woman's case, the crisis that prompted her to seek therapy was a logical outgrowth of her internal paradigm. Her decision to change this paradigm liberated her from a pattern that limited her and those close to her.
There is a cliché among psychotherapists that the Chinese ideograph for the word crisis contains two symbols: the first signifying "danger" and the second, "opportunity."
If we merely try to smooth over a crisis, medicate people in crisis, just help them cope, we really have not taken advantage of the opportunity that a crisis gives us, which is to ask, "Wait a minute, who ever said life is perfect"?
This is not to suggest that being in crisis is any fun. It is not. The anxiety, pressure and sense of doom are usually overwhelming. I usually recruit some help from family members, encourage the client to take really good care of him or herself and to consider taking a homeopathic remedy, ignatia amara, which is usually very effective in helping people in crisis to cope. Most clients who stick with the process can honestly say that the crisis held some very important lessons, and that their original assumptions would not have served them very well in the long run.