Adventures in Natural Medicine: Taking a Cold Plunge for Pain

It seems impossible that just a few short years ago I would be cranking up the heat to run temps that could keep an indoor rainforest alive. šŸ˜‚

Thanks to my medicines my internal thermometer works properly now and after researching ways to lower inflammation, I found another tool that works and nature provides it freely. Especially where I live!

If you don’t already know, which I’m sure you do, cold plunging is very therapeutic for all kinds of reasons. It helps with pain, inflammation, mental health and even makes your skin glow more radiantly. I could link a thousand research studies but you can easily Google information on this (and health warnings for who shouldn’t do it).

I personally wanted every health benefit it could offer but especially the pain thing so I started by taking “cold” showers after a warm bath every day. When I say “cold” I mean between lukewarm and ice cold, mostly because it’s painful if it’s too cold pelting down from the showerhead and also because now thanks to my mast cell disease I risk anaphylaxis kicking in just from the shock.

Somehow I found a happy place on the knob. And it worked! My pain levels went way down for hours afterward, even if I skipped my medicines, which proved it was working (to me at least).

Then I started taking warm baths, draining them after awhile and just letting the cold air of the room slowly dry me off. It was less shocking to the system than the “cold” water, but seemed to ease the inflammation just the same, especially if I turned the heat down ahead of time and left the bedroom door cracked so the bathroom didn’t get steamy hot.

So that works, too, but I found that now that winter is here so does just getting out of bed, kicking off the robe and slippers and opening the window first thing in the morning. For the last few mornings I’ve been doing that while drinking my coffee and saying good morning to the pups, standing there for a good five or ten minutes while opening the window a little wider every few minutes until it’s eventually fully open and the cold air pours in.

The hubs is usually gone before I get up but probably wouldn’t like that I do this because then the house has to get back up to temperature so the heater kicks on for a half hour or so when I’m done, but it feels sooo good! Plus, it can’t be good to be cooped up with all this stale air all winter. Opening the windows once in awhile is just necessary!

Of course he won’t see it that way if our heating bill doubles. šŸ˜„

Maybe I’ll stick a towel under the door next time to help keep the cold air from escaping though. Suddenly I feel like a teenage girl whose dad will catch her smoking so I need to figure out a way to hide it…

Anyway, I know health posts can be boring which is why I’m attaching a sunrise picture of the Tetons this morning, but if this advice helps just one reader, it’s worth it. Being pain free is sooo nice.

Hope you all have a happy Saturday!!

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