This past weekend both of both of my girls were suffering from terrible head colds with the accompanying drippy noses, wet coughs, mild fevers and malaise. It’s always difficult as a physician to see my little ones go through illnesses but I know that the best thing I can do is to support their immune systems and let the innate healing happen.
One of my favorite home remedies for immune support is the Wet Sock Treatment. This is a simple form of hydrotherapy that can be done on just about anyone of any age group from tiny babies to the elderly.
The treatment involves wearing a pair of wet, cold socks to bed and letting your body work during the night to warm your feet and dry the socks out. In order to do this, your body increases circulation to the feet which helps to decrease congestion in the head and chest. This increased movement of blood also helps move important lymph and immune cells throughout the body so they’re able to continue to combat infection.
The Wet Sock Treatment is great for pain relief and can also be used for any aches or pains in the lower body such as strained muscles or sore joints.
Here is the quick step-by-step protocol:
- 1 pair of 100% cotton socks (I like mid to low calf height)
- 1 pair of 100% wool socks
- Warm bath or warm foot bath (optional) with Epsom Salts
- Take your pair of cotton socks and soak them completely under running cold tap water. Wring them out fully so they do not drip. At this point you can decide if you want to pop them in the freezer for a bit of added BRRRRR! I usually opt for the freezer for myself but not for my kiddos.
- Warm yourself! Either jump in a soothing Epsom salt bath for 10-15 minutes or do a foot soak for at least 5 minutes prior to putting on those cold socks.
- Dry yourself fully, get into warm pajamas and be ready for bed immediately.
- Pull on the cold, cotton socks first and then pull the wool socks overtop. Get directly into bed and avoid getting chilled.
- Keep the socks on the entire night. By morning they should be dry and warm!
- Repeat this treatment for at least 3 consecutive nights. For children who are napping, you can do the wet socks during their longer naps as well.
The Wet Sock Treatment is great for sinus infections, coughs, colds, sore throats, ear aches/infections, headaches, migraines, nasal congestion as well as for aches and pains in the lower body as described above.
A Word of Caution:
People who have or may have circulatory issues such as in diabetes or with Raynaud’s phenomenon or syndrome or simply have colder feet should take care to always do the warming phase. Consult your physician prior to the treatment if you have questions.
So next time you or your loved ones need an easy, all natural boost to your immune system, give the Wet Sock Treatment a try.
Check out my short “How-to” Video to see just how easy it is.
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