It’s not a cold.

On the radio yesterday, I heard yet another proclamation that I live in the “healthiest state in the nation.”


Almost every time I leave my house someone asks if I have a cold.  “No,” I say, “I’m just allergic to Colorado.”

Technically, I know I can’t be, but that is how it feels, and, apparently, how it looks.  This altitude and semi-arid climate does not agree with my sinuses (or my skin – but my hair does well), and it seems my symptoms get worse every year.  Winter, being the driest season, finds me constantly congested and sneezing with lovely dark bags under my eyes.

I’ve had one steadily increasing sinus headache since returning from my Thanksgiving holiday back east.  Back east, where the air is thick and humid and people complain about it all the time, I don’t wake up with a blood crusted nose when I forget to coat my nostrils with vaseline before going to bed.  I never appreciated humidity until I lived someplace without it.  (Even so, I am still not a fan of sticky, sweaty summers.)

Because my discomfort is caused by dryness, it seems counter-intuitive to take antihistamines or decongestants.  Wouldn’t they be even more drying?  I resisted for a long time, but eventually began taking generic Benadryl at night.  I figured even if it doesn’t help with the congestion, it might help me sleep despite it.  I’m not sure whether it’s helping me sleep, but it’s not helping me breathe.

Yesterday, desperate from throbbing sinuses, I went to the pharmacy, where I pinky swore I am not manufacturing illegal substances in my basement, and bought myself a box of good old Sudafed, or, at least the generic version of it.  I popped two as soon as I got in my car.

Psuedoephedrine, you are my new best friend.  I hope I don’t get put on a list of suspicious persons before winter is over, because, really, I just want to be able to breathe through my nose and not have a headache that makes me want to sleep all day.

Pinky swear.


8 thoughts on “It’s not a cold.

  1. You can’t buy Benadryl (well the US drug version you can buy a different version here…. it doesn’t work for me) at Costco. Only in small packs as a sleep aid, from the Pharmacist who glares at you if you try to buy more than one pack, ‘these are only for OCCASIONAL use’ :sigh:

    However – I’ve found the nasal saline rinse works wonders to help with my allergies and the lack of humidity when my skin goes bad. I use a squeezy bottle ‘Neilmed’ and we mix our own deionised salt and bicarbonate of soda 7:1 by weight.

    Figuring we’re both light skinned red-heads it might help you too.

    • Thank you, Missus Wookie. I think a saline rinse would be very helpful. Funny about the glaring over Benadryl; when I researched it last year, everything I found said it was not addictive.

  2. i sympathize. when i move to norfolk, i developed what i thought was a cold that lasted 18 months, 14 of those where i had absolutely no sense of taste. i read in old history of the city, that even in the 1600’s they wrote of the “bad air” of norfolk that caused sickness. it has puzzled me that we can not buy sudafed. what happened to the concept of not punishing the majority of the populace for the actions of the minority of the populace?

  3. Sudafed is the only thing that works for my husband. We always feel like criminals when we have to buy it. We draw straws over who has to fill out the paperwork. At least you can breath again!

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