I need rest!
August 24, 2014 4:10 AM   Subscribe

I'm ill—down with a flu—stuffy head, terrible cold and sneezing, aches and pains. I know what I need most of all is rest but my brain just won't cooperate. I'm full of this crazy hyperactive energy and totally unable to rest. Any ideas?
posted by miaow to Health & Fitness (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Have you been taking pseudoephedrine? If so, maybe lay off it. In the meantime, can you channel your energy into something not too rowdy? Clearing and sorting papers, purging your inbox rather than something like washing windows?
posted by Trivia Newton John at 4:19 AM on August 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Medication—I'm only on paracetamol for when the fever flares up. Nothing else.

And although I'm not doing crazy things physically, my brain is on double speed and wearing me out.
posted by miaow at 4:22 AM on August 24, 2014

If you're sneezing, an antihistamine--often found in multi-symptom cold medicines--will help that and help make you drowsy. In the US a common one is NyQuil. I assume from the use of the word paracetamol (Tylenol/acetaminophen in the US) you're not in the US though. Do you have Lemsip where you are? That's a multi-symptom cold medicine I took in England many years ago.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 4:37 AM on August 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

Easy sudoku (so you don't get frustrated) and engaging instrumental music (I suggest a favorite movie soundtrack) at a low volume. Set yourself up in bed with everything you need and count numbers and hum along until you fall asleep. Just play the one album so it doesn't keep playing as you sleep.

Drink lots of water and try to eat something simple when you wake up. I hope you feel better soon!
posted by Mizu at 5:05 AM on August 24, 2014

This happens to me sometimes. I wouldn't fight it--like insomnia, lying there working yourself up about how you need to rest is just going to make it worse. Trivia Newton John's suggestion is a good one--find something to do that can easily be put down if you need to lurch off to bed before you're done (so, you know, I wouldn't go on a run or bake a cake or anything, but go scrub the soap scum off the sink or go sort through your closet/bookshelf for things to take down to Goodwill or whatever.) You'll burn through that energy quicker than you think.

(Also, if you do decide to take a multi-symptom cocktail, make sure to wait the 4 hours since your last dose of paracetamol-only, and don't take both--it's both easy and dangerous to take too much.)
posted by kagredon at 5:15 AM on August 24, 2014

Try a mega dose of calcium and magnesium to relax your muscles?
posted by St. Peepsburg at 5:30 AM on August 24, 2014

Now I know you aren't buzzing from sudafed, I'd say rug up and give your brain something to graze on but nothing substantial. Rug up, lie down and put on droney podcasts, lame daytime tv or white noise. Building on Mizu's suggestion: sometimes when I'm tired but my mind is buzzing I try to list unrelated words, kind of hard to explain but similar to the counting idea. You like there thinking 'shovel... tubesocks... maple... vacuum cleaner...' It crowds out other meatier thoughts.
posted by Trivia Newton John at 5:57 AM on August 24, 2014

I just accept it and do what I want to keep busy. Soon enough I've tired myself out and I'm ready to rest.
posted by Aranquis at 6:07 AM on August 24, 2014

I just watch TV. Old movies, or the Simpsons marathon, or whatever. Snooze as you will. Don't fret. Rest and sleep are pretty synonymous when getting over the flu.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:35 AM on August 24, 2014

I'd make myself a hot drink with lemon juice, honey and some kind of liquor (rum, if you have it).
posted by Too-Ticky at 6:43 AM on August 24, 2014

Listen to the Goldberg Variations - Bach designed them to help his patron sleep, and they work wonders on me.
posted by J-Do at 8:19 AM on August 24, 2014 [2 favorites]

Fevers make me like that. A nice tepid not cold shower, to cool you down might help. Snuggle on the couch with a soft blanket lots of pillows and old movies you've seen before on. If you really can't slow your brain down read a book or play on a tablet/laptop. If your body is physically resting that will mean it can focus its resources on fighting the bug.
posted by wwax at 9:07 AM on August 24, 2014

Thank you thank you. Such great advice.
posted by miaow at 9:49 AM on August 24, 2014

Read Harry Potter. Exciting enough to distract you while being simple enough for a flu-addled brain to comprehend. Also long enough to get through the flu.
posted by Capri at 5:10 PM on August 24, 2014

In particular, the spiked hot drink worked wonders!
posted by miaow at 8:12 PM on August 24, 2014 [1 favorite]

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