Warming Socks


There is nothing worse than sick kids.  The lack of sleep, the irritable child, staying home from school and the worry and toll it takes on the entire family.  As a Naturopathic Doctor formerly working at a busy primary care practice in Portland, Oregon, I have worked with numerous families to help their children’s immune system combat the array of childhood illnesses. I’d love to share the virtues of “warming socks” with you – an old Naturopathic standby that works wonders! This silly sock treatment actually improves the circulation of lymph and blood and helps to clear congestion from the head and upper respiratory passages.

You’ll need:  1 pair of thin cotton socks, 1 pair of thick wool socks (that come up higher than the cotton socks – mom or dad’s wool socks work too), 1 towel, and a warm bath or warm foot bath

The low down: 1. Put your kid in the warm bath or just their feet in the warm foot bath for 10 minutes.  2. Prepare the socks: soak cotton socks in the coldest tap water and wring out thoroughly.  If your tap water isn’t very cold, you can place the socks in the freezer for an even stronger immune effect!  3. Remove and dry child from bath.  Immediately put cold wet socks on their feet followed by the wool socks (and of course their cozy PJs too) 4. Put child immediately to bed.  Keep socks on overnight.  You will find that the socks are dry by the morning. Note: make sure your kiddos feet are WARM! This should actually feel good!  

You’ll want to repeat this treatment for 3 nights in a row.  I have typically found that the warming sock treatment works best if you do it at the first signs of a cold.  Somehow it almost always grants a night of good sleep. Of course, if your child has impaired circulation, diabetes, arterial insufficiency or the like, please consult your physician first. I strongly encourage you to experience the simple magic of warming socks not just for the kids, but for yourself too- it’s an  incredibly easy, fast and inexpensive treatment you can do anywhere. 

Be well,

   Dr. Erin Sharman, ND

Andrea Telfer