The summer should be a time for relaxing, unwinding and enjoying the good weather. After months of surviving in the damp and in the dark, it’s now finally sunny and dry meaning that you can go outside and feel warm and meaning you’ll be filled with an energy and optimism that the winter just doesn’t provide.
What it shouldn’t mean is that you are still stuck indoors, still stuffed up and still unable to relax because of various different summer ailments that pose the largest problem just when the sun comes out. Things like hay fever, sun burn, heat stroke and more all conspire to make summer more difficult and less enjoyable and often pose as much of a problem as flu and general malaise in the winter.
Fortunately for most of these problems there are home remedies and ways to avoid them. Here we will look at the major summer ailments and some of the different home remedies you can use to combat them.
The Problem: Heat Stroke
Heat stroke occurs as a result of heat and dehydration which results in the body becoming too hot. Symptoms are faintness, fainting, headaches and dizziness and loss of consciousness. This can be a serious condition so if you are suffering from it you need to address the problem.
Fortunately heat stroke is very easy to treat. Immediately get to a shaded area and particularly get your head out of the sun. Drink lots of water and if possible apply cool water to the skin. Drinking an isotonic drink with sugar and salt can also help to restore blood levels of each. To avoid it in future, make sure to wear a hat and to drink regularly while avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun.
The Problem: Swimmer’s Ear
Swimmer’s ear isn’t caused by the summer sun itself, but rather by the activity that it leads to for many people – swimming in the sea. The problem occurs when you go swimming and then allow the salt water to dry in the sun while sun bathing which leads to infection. Symptoms include itchiness and discomfort as well as a discharge.
To prevent swimmer’s ear make sure to dry your ear’s out thoroughly after swimming in the sea rather than letting them dry out naturally. If the problem has already set in however then avoid using cotton buds which can worsen the problem and try this home remedy: mix some white vinegar, rubbing alcohol, apple cider vinegar and baby oil then apply it to the ear with a hot compress. If this doesn’t help them see a doctor who can treat the infection.
The Problem: Prickly Heat
Prickly heat is a common malady in hot countries. This is a reaction on the body to excess sweating under the clothes which results in red blisters and lumps. This can occur area, but the most common places to find it are those areas that sweat the most such as the armpits, the back, the shoulder and the forehead.
Prickly heat will go away on its own over time, but you should avoid scratching it while it is there or you will risk breaking the skin and causing infection. At the same time you should remove the clothing if it’s sweaty and can try bathing in cool water to reduce irritation and to wash the skin. Wearing loose fitting clothes and materials such as linen or cotton is a good idea in the summer and a good way to avoid the problem.
The Problem: Sun Burn
Sun burn is a malady that is easy enough to avoid, and yet one that haunts so many of us. Here, by soaking up the sun’s harmful UV rays we end up burning our skin resulting in an attractive red complexion as well as very sensitive flaking skin.
Of course the easiest way to avoid sun burn is to simply stay out of the sun. This means staying out of it whenever you start to feel yourself burn and making sure to get some time in the shade. Be careful though because you can burn in the shade too. Sun block will help to protect you from those rays even while you’re hiding, while meanwhile you can make sure to get some respite from it under a hat and some clothes. You can also help yourself in other ways, for instance by consuming antioxidant-rich foods which can help to protect your skin against free radicals from the radiation and so reduce your chances of developing cancer and of encouraging wrinkles. This won’t be enough on its own though; you need to use it in conjunction with a sunblock or other lotion.
If you do burn though then you’ll need to solve the problem still. The best bet here is to make sure to moisturize your skin which you can do by using a moisturizer or something else such as Shea butter. Aloe Vera gel and mint can also be used to help cool the pain and ease the burning sensation, while you can also spray cold water on the area to ease any discomfort or take a bath in oatmeal.
When you return outside you need to avoid the sun as well as preventing things from rubbing against your skin. To achieve this, try wearing light cottons and linen clothes that will rest away from the skin and allow air to circulate and cool your wounds.
The Problem: Hay Fever
Hay fever is the bane of many people’s summer months. Here they struggle with stuffed sinuses, running eyes and noses, sneezing and all the hall marks of a flu from the neck up. This can be highly distracting and unpleasant and is caused by an allergic reaction to certain kinds of pollen from plants and grasses that come out in the summer portion of the year.
Thankfully there are several different solutions if you suffer from this particular summer ailment. The obvious solution is of course to keep the windows closed when you’re indoors and to use the air conditioning while you’re indoors. However at the same time you will also find that you sometimes still need to go outside and for this you will need another solution. Anti-histamine tablets can be bought over the counter to help prevent the allergic reaction, while at the same time you can simply identify and avoid the particular plants causing the problem. If you are feeling very bunged up and need to relieve some of the pressure then use a hot compress to break up some of the mucus and to reduce swelling. Another home remedy is to place cool tea bags on your eye lids which can help to ease any pain, while applying some petroleum jelly is also said by many people to be helpful.