Air Pollution has reached high levels this week due to forest fires in Sumatra. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself & your family from haze from a Naturopathic Medicine Perspective.
1. You can use a phone app to monitor the levels of air pollution such as “Sg Air Quality” which records data put out by the Sg government.
2. Children, elderly and those with respiratory diseases are advised to avoid outdoor air if possible.
3. Wear a facemask when outdoors. Those labelled as N95 face masks are helpful to protect from particulate matter & toxins. You can find these at Guardian pharmacies.
4. Close windows at home & use the A/C.
5. If you have an essential oil diffuser – you can diffuse oils that are helpful for respiration, sore throat & dry eyes, such as lemon, lavender, lemongrass, clove, cinnamon, chamomile, peppermint, eucalyptus radiata, basil and especially holy basil.
6. If you have a HEPA air purifier- please do keep these running until the Haze warnings have stopped.
7. Apply oil to the inner nostrils: ghee, sesame seed oil or coconut oil to protect the air passages from dryness associated with being in the air con for long periods.
8. Use Manuka honey to coat your throat if it’s getting dry OR a natural throat spray/ cough syrup advised a naturopathic doctor/ health practitioner.
9.Drink teas that are soothing for the respiratory passages: Holy Basil, Marshmallow Root, Licorice, Lavender and Chamomile, Peppermint and Clove. Consult with a Naturopathic Doctor/ health practitioner on dosing and safety. **Avoid liquorice if you have high BP.
10. Use a throat gargle at night before bed: Simmer 2 cups of water with 1/2 tsp of Himalayan salt, 1/2 tsp of turmeric and 2 whole cloves. Simmer down to 1 cup of water. Use the gargle for the whole family.
11. Drink lots of filtered water, broth and herbal teas throughout the day.
12. Increase your intake antioxidant-rich/ colourful foods: bowls of berries, carrot soup or juice, red pepper and pumpkin soups, green juices.
13. Consider using antioxidant supplementation such as elderberry syrup, vitamin C, and much more under the guidance of a Naturopathic Doctor/ health practitioner. **remember quality matters when it comes to supplements.
***Do seek out emergency care if you or a family member is struggling with breathing***