Flu season is officially upon us (boo!). And it seems no amount of aspirin or cough syrup can cure the headaches, sore muscles and sinus pain that plague us in these cold winter months. Lots of studies are popping up that argue common cold medicines are actually making things worse. So this season we’re skipping the pharmacy and letting nature take its course.
Cue: wintergreen essential oil.
It’s got a sweet, fresh scent that makes it a popular ingredient in gum, toothpaste and delicious organic mints. But wintergreen also has tremendous therapeutic properties that can help beat the ugly cold symptoms that are getting in the way of your busy life.
For muscle pain
Wintergreen oil is a natural anti-inflammatory and works wonders on sore muscles and joints. Adding a few drops to a warm bath will help soothe, relax and relieve all that pent up tension.
Wintergreen is a wonderful remedy for nasal and respiratory congestion. For a natural vapo-rub (at a fraction of the cost), combine a drop or two of wintergreen oil to a dab of coconut oil and breath deeply as you apply to your chest, neck and upper back. The results are immediate and especially soothing right before bed when your lungs and sinuses tend to get especially clogged up.
When your cold has you struggling to get through the day, wave a little wintergreen oil under your nose and inhale. The fresh scent will zing you awake and help you stay focused. If your flu has you cooped up at home, another option is to use wintergreen oil in a reed diffuser or vaporizer. This way you're literally surrounding yourself with the aromatic benefits.
Like any remedy, it’s important to use essential oils with caution. When applying topically, it’s best to use a carrier, like coconut oil, to dilute essential oils. For more info on the use of essential oils, check out Wellness Mama’s super informative blog post or consult with a health expert or doctor.
Image courtesy of letsgohealthy.org