Sunburn, insect bites, motion sickness… many summer ailments can be cured in the pantry!
The priority: to relieve a burn caused by the sun.
The strategy: cold water compresses are applied to the affected areas. For the most affected parts, grate a raw potato or crush a cucumber, wrap it in gauze (a light, sterile cotton bandage found in pharmacies) and apply it to the skin. Finally, drink plenty of water to rehydrate the skin and help it heal.
The priority: to restore our internal temperature after prolonged exposure to intense heat.
The strategy: we stop all activity and take refuge in an air-conditioned place (or, at least, shaded). Drink water or a cool sports drink. Avoid alcohol, which interferes with hydration and the regulation of body temperature, as well as very sweet liquids (juices, soft drinks), which slow down the absorption of water by the intestine.
3. Skin rash and insect bite
The priority: to calm the skin that has been in contact with an irritant or an allergen, such as poison ivy, raspberry, cleaning products, insects, etc.
The strategy: Apply a cold water compress or poultice (a pasty mixture) made of finely ground oatmeal and water. If the lesion is extensive, take a cool bath sprinkled with baking soda (baking soda) or ground oatmeal.
4. Superficial burn
The priority: to alleviate the pain caused by intense friction, by contact with a hot object, or by a chemical substance.
The strategy: run cold water (from the tap) over the lesion for 15 to 20 minutes. Avoid ice cubes or ice water, as well as fatty substances (butter, oil, or others), which interfere with healing. The wound is simply covered with dry sterile gauze to protect it and promote healing.
5. Traveler’s diarrhea
The priority: maintain hydration by ingesting safe and suitable drinks.
The strategy: Frequently drink small amounts of bottled water, broth, or a commercial or homemade rehydration solution* made from water, electrolytes (sodium, potassium), and sugar. After a day or two, we gradually start eating again, starting with simple carbohydrates (soda cookies, bananas, apple sauce, toast, rice, or yogurt with probiotics).
* Mix 4 cups (1 L) water (boiled or bottled), ½ tsp. (2 ml) salt, ½ tsp. (2 ml) baking soda and ¼ cup (60 ml) sugar.
The priority: to rest the stomach and relieve abdominal discomfort caused by overeating, fatigue, or anxiety.
The strategy: eat little at a time but often, chewing well. Slowly savor lemon water or a mint or licorice herbal tea. Chewing gum stimulates saliva production and forces you to swallow, which can also help. Avoid fatty or spicy foods, carbonated drinks, coffee, and alcohol, which are more irritating or hard to digest.
7. Motion sickness
The priority: to alleviate nausea, vomiting, headaches, and other symptoms associated with traveling by car, plane, or boat.
The strategy: keep your stomach empty (or light), even if it means snacking on foods that are easy to tolerate (crackers, bananas, toast, apple sauce). We straighten our seat and take a deep breath, staring at a point on the horizon. Can’t look outside? So we close our eyes. Above all, we avoid reading or watching videos.
8. Sprain or swelling
The priority: reduce pain and limit swelling.
The strategy: immediately apply ice, a cold pack, or, better, a bag of frozen peas or corn, which will have the advantage of covering the joint. To avoid frostbite, wrap the ice in a thin towel and alternate 10 minutes of application and 10 minutes of waiting. Repeat several times a day for the first few days. Also, one can compress the joint with an elastic bandage, raise it above the level of the heart (especially at night) and avoid using it as much as possible.