The Best Tip for Stopping a Cold in its Tracks

You come home from work one day and you start to feel that tickle in your throat.  You know what that tickle means.  It means that you are about to get a cold.  But nobody has time for a cold, not when there is dinner to cook, emails to respond to, bills to pay, or kids to manage.  So stop that cold before it even starts with the Warming Socks Treatment.  I also call them Magic Socks because the kids like it.

Warming Socks Treatment (or Magic Socks)

  1. Right before going to bed, take a really hot shower or bath, so you are nice and warm.
  2. Put on some extra warm, snuggly jammies and make sure you have enough blankets on the bed to be cozy warm all night.
  3. Next, get out a pair of thin cotton socks.  You are going to get these wet with really cold water.  Ring them out as best you can so they are damp and not soaking wet. The point is for them to be cold, not wet.
  4. Optional: I highly recommend this step, but it might seem too daunting the first few times.  Again, we want your socks to be cold.  Sometimes, the tap water just isn't cold enough or the socks warm up before you put them on.  So, I stick my damp socks in the freezer for 5 minutes.
  5. Grab a pair of wool socks or other thick socks.  Depending on how damp your socks are, you may need two additional pairs of socks.
  6. With your two (or three) pairs of socks in hand, climb in bed and put your damp socks on first and cover them with the dry socks.
  7. Snuggle up and go to sleep.
  8. Wake feeling refreshed with dry socks and no cold!

At this point, some of you may think I am crazy.  How can wet socks prevent a cold?  Glad you asked.  Here is how the power of hydrotherapy works.  When you do a long application of cold, your body responds by trying to warm up that area.  This increases your overall blood flow, which increases the circulation of your immune cells in your body.  This is one way it can nip a cold in the bud.  This application also helps your body temperature to increase.  Most of us have been led to believe that a fever or any temperature higher than normal is a bad thing.  This is not necessarily true.  Increasing our core body temperature is one way our body kills germs.  In the case of a cold, increasing the body temperature at the right time can stop the cold in its tracks.  

The trick to this treatment is the timing.  It is most effective right when you feel a cold coming on, but before you actually get sick.  If you don't know what I mean, pay attention next time you get a cold.  You body gives you a few warning signs before you really get sick.  This generally includes that tickle in the throat, sneezing more than usual that day, and feeling a little extra tired and worn out.  The day you notice these symptoms is when you need to do this treatment.  If you miss this window, you may still get sick, but you can continue to do the Warming Socks Treatment every night to help your body fight the cold.  This may reduce the duration and severity of the cold.  

Many people also report sleeping the best they have in a long time with this treatment.  Others have also reported it helping with migraines.  So give it a try and see what it can do for you!