How to Prepare for that Dreaded Illness, and Feel Better
Over the last week I have been sick, Hubs has been sick, and now #1 is under the weather. There is nothing more sad than a two-year-old with a stuffy nose.
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There is also nothing more whiny, but I understand. I’m pretty certain I was whiny for a few days. So much so that I was down and out on the loveseat for about three solid days until I started to feel better.
The house went to shambles and most of our meals were take-out. Hubs even said I had to feel better soon, because they need me to take care of everything. I don’t know if that’s comforting or concerning.
I’ll take comforting, for now.
Either way, it meant when I was down and out, I didn’t have the things I needed, because, well, I’m the one that would get those. While I could have ordered from Instacart, I opted to send Hubs on a mission for medicines, fluids, and cupcakes.
We won’t discuss how many of those cupcakes I ate, but I assure you, they helped me feel better. How? I don’t know. Moving on.
So, now that I’m back up and running, it’s time to prepare for the next bout of illness that hits our household. And with that, I present to you, your necessity list for your “End the Sick, Quick” kit.
All of the items included are (or should be) shelf-stable. They can easily be stored in a Rubbermaid container in a cool, dry place.
*Disclosure: I do not claim to be a doctor in any sense. The below items are simply recommendations of the items I prefer when I’m feeling sick.
1. Things to Make You Feel Better
- Soft tissue: I don’t know about you, but normal tissues are fine, until I get sick. Then, I just use too many to warrant the rough feeling on my nose. Tissues with lotion are lifesavers, and they even have some brands now with aloe and Vaporub. Genius! Grab a box of those.
- Chapstick: This last illness kept my mouth pretty dry and started in on a case of dehydration, which led to licking my lips a lot and having them become beyond chapped. The painful kind of chapped. I ended up having to use my trusty tube of Burt’s Bees chap stick, but then realized I wouldn’t want to use it again once I feel better. In this instance, use your old, on-hand chap stick while you’re ill. Once you feel better, pitch it and replace it with the tube you’ve got in your “End the Sick, Quick” kit.
- Cough drops: Sometimes, the tickle in your throat just won’t go away. Grab some cough drops to cure it quick. I came across Cepacol’s while I was pregnant and I highly recommend them. They soothe your sore throat much better than Hall’s every could. They are a bit pricier, but well worth the small expense. Stock up!
2. Things to Cure the Sickness
- Dayquil/Nyquil: Whether you have to get through a day at work while under the weather, or a restless night of sleep, these medicines are key to have on hand. I recommend the gel caps, as the liquid could end up spilling in your kit. Make sure to regularly check the expiration dates, as well. You don’t want to get sick and find out your medicines expired a month prior.
- Sudafed: 100x better than using nasal spray for your sinuses and 100% necessary when the pressure is sitting right on your nose. You may have to show your ID for this, but that’s worth it for a quick cure. Make sure to drink lots of water with each pill because it will dry you out, along with the mucus.
- Mucinex: Mucinex and I have a love-hate relationship. I love how it fixes any sort of chest congestion I may have, I hate how it makes me feel completely loopy. So long as you don’t have any serious responsibilities, I highly recommend a dose of this when the pressure is in your chest.
- Zarbee’s Cough + Mucus: This is what I keep on hand for #1. It’s like natural Mucinex for munchkins. Keep in mind that it expires 90 days after it’s been opened. I recommend using a Sharpie to write the date you open it on the label.
- Children’s Tylenol: This is just a regular in our medicine cabinet, and since it’s used more often than the others, it may be best to have your own dedicated bottle for your “End the Sick, Quick” kit.
- Children’s Ibuprofen: The same goes for children’s ibuprofen. An extra bottle stashed in your kit never hurts. And, with help from a pediatrician, we figured out that ibuprofen can handle #1’s fevers much better than Tylenol could ever pretend to.
3. Things to Fill Your Belly
- Powerade: Stay hydrated! It’s so very important when you’re sick and will help to flush out whatever bug is stuck inside of you. I prefer the light blue, zero-calorie kind at room temperature. Remember, though, don’t rely on Powerade to be your only fluid. While it tastes yummy, there’s no substitute for water, and I’ve noticed that too much Powerade gives me acid reflux.
- Chicken Noodle Soup: Because Mom said so, and you’re the mom now, so you have to say so. Though, I will say, that finding something organic and natural will be a better bet than the cheapest can you can stock up on. Go for at least four cans.
- Saltines: This might be all you can stomach, depending on the sickness. Don’t go hungry, stash some saltines away. Remember, they go stale really fast, so pop them in a plastic bag once they’ve been opened.
- Shelf-stable Juice: Orange juice would be better, but you won’t find anything remotely close to natural orange juice that is shelf-stable. Grab a jug of 100% cranberry or grape juice. Apple juice is a fan around our house.
- Ginger Tea: This will settle your stomach and the warmth will just make you feel all squishy inside. Pair that with the Mucinex and you’ll be happy as a clam, despite any illness.
- Gingerale: Grab a six-pack of the small cans (10 oz. or so). They’ll come in handy and help fill your belly when nothing else manages to stay down.
4. Things to Clean
- Lysol: You’re going to feel better and you’re going to be very angry at whatever bug started this whole fiasco, and you’re going to want to rid it from your house, ASAP. Having a can of Lysol on hand will start to expedite the process. Remember, to clean off the little things, too: remote controls, cell phones, charging cords, everything you’ve touched with your germ-ridden hands.
- Clorox Wipes: This goes hand-in-hand with the Lysol. Get that bug out of your house! Wipe down doorknobs, toilet handles, light switches, the works.
5. Whatever Else Helps You Feel Better
- ________________ (Fill-in-the-blank): I would love for my sickness go-to’s to be your cure-all’s as well, but let’s be real, it doesn’t always work that way. While we may have lots of similarities, I’m sure there’s something else that is sure to make you feel better. I’d love to hear what it is. Tell me in the comments below!
Whatever you do to get over your illness, make sure you plan ahead. There’s nothing worse than being stranded and feeling icky.
Make a note to go out this weekend and grab up the things you need to fill your “End the Sick, Quick” kit. Hopefully, you won’t have to use it anytime soon.
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