How to Take Care of Yourself When You’re Feeling Ill


There probably isn’t a terrible and uncomfortable feeling as when you’re ill.

Your mind and body may refuse to comply with usual tasks, leaving you unable to maintain your routine.

While most people can take care of themselves and thrive independently, an illness can throw a wrench on that ability, making you struggle.

However, you can still practice self-care even with the pain, grogginess, or fatigue that may accompany an illness.

Here are actionable tips for taking care of yourself when you’re feeling unwell.

  1. Rest

We need rest to refresh and heal, and that couldn’t be more important when you’re ill.

All systems in your body benefit from resting, particularly the immune system which is responsible for fighting illnesses. So prioritize rest to allow your body to fight what’s ailing you.

When you’re ill, you’re more likely to be tired than usual. You may be in pain as well, and that can make you restless and uncomfortable. Complete rest will relieve some of that discomfort.

The best part of resting is sleeping, as it helps the body adequately relax, triggering homeostasis, which is crucial for self-healing. As part of your resting routine, sleep early, stay in bed longer, or take naps during the day.

  1. Take a Walk

While it’s important to stay put and rest as much as possible, it’s also recommended to get some exercise. Your body needs physical activity just as much as it needs rest.

Physical activity is necessary for keeping your body systems healthy. Since you’re unwell, try simple activities that aren’t physically or mentally demanding but are still beneficial.

It may be uncomfortable or even painful, but if you’re able to engage in simple activities like taking the stairs or walking around the block, try doing so.

  1. Drink Up!

Doctors scream hydration for a reason.

Your system needs to flush out toxins, regulate temperature, hydrate cells, and supply nutrients and oxygen to the cells. This is the work of fluids.

If there’s a time to strictly stay hydrated, it’s when you’re unwell because you need plenty of water and other fluids to aid your body in recovery.

Understandably, you may have difficulties drinking water when you’re ill. It’s a time when food isn’t that appealing either. If water doesn’t go down easily, you could substitute it with other healthy drinks like flavored water, fresh juice, and soup.

  1. Plan Your Meals

You may also struggle with your appetite when ill. While not wanting to eat anything or eating too little may be tempting, it’s not good for you.

Snacking may also seem like a more appealing and convenient alternative to healthy meals. But, maintaining a healthy diet is necessary to supply your body with needed nutrients.

You can make it easier to eat your meals by reducing them to tiny portions spread out throughout the day. That way, eating won’t feel like a chore.

  1. Boost Energy

Feeling less energetic when you’re ill is normal, but severe fatigue can make it difficult to practice self-care.

You can manage fatigue by eating foods that increase energy, like fruits, vegetables, and nuts.

Cut down on caffeinated drinks, however. While they are stimulating, they are not the healthiest option.

Alternatively, you may try herbal preparations for relieving fatigue and boosting energy, such as rhodiola rosea, schisandra, and cannabis.

Cannabis is the most powerful of these herbs, but it may present unpleasant side effects like hangovers in some people. Educate yourself more on weed hangovers and their prevention.

  1. Arrange for Assistance

You may not be able to carry on normally when you’re unwell. It’s best to slow down and understand that you’re not okay at the moment.

If you have tasks that demand attention, arrange for assistance. Call in sick at the workplace so that someone else can step in.

At home, let loved ones know you’re ill and won’t be in a position to do certain tasks like house chores.

If you live alone, hire a cleaning service in your area to assist with the washing and dusting around the house.


Self-care is crucial when you’re ill as it’s a big part of recovery. If you tend to be hard on yourself when you’re okay, prioritize your well-being when an illness strikes.

Through rest and other self-care guidelines, you will be able to speed up recovery.

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