How To Deal with Swollen Lymph Glands (Nodes)

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Bragg's Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, my second major weapon in the battle against swollen lymph glands.

Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, my second major weapon in the battle against swollen lymph nodes.

Swollen lymph nodes (glands) are a much more widespread problem then I’d realized. How to deal with them, to get the swelling down? For thousands of worried sufferers, that’s the question.

Wait. Two things: Firstly, if I slip and call them lymph glands instead of nodes, that’s what our family always called them…but Internet usage seems to go mostly with nodes, so we’ll try to stick to that. Secondly, we first have to ascertain that those swollen glands aka nodes under the jawline or down the side of the neck, sometimes even on the chest or up on the head, are not cancer indicators. Right?

Right.

Fortunately, that’s not all that difficult to do, or at least it wasn’t in my case. There are various self help discussion sites online that detail the stories of hundreds if not thousands of folks who did it the AMA way, i.e. via biopsy and lab work. That’s fine if it works for you. However, I’m a believer in avoiding doctors to the maximum extent possible. They don’t know my body like I do, nor have most of them studied alternative health options to any significant degree.

By the way, if you don’t know what a “biopsy” is, think of it as a core sample dug out of your flesh. My wife has (among many other issues) a serious challenge with skin problems, some of which are clearly stress triggered psoriasis outbreaks and some of which are without doubt parasite related. The doc had no clue about either, but he did “take a biopsy”–i.e. core sample–right out of the middle of one of her sores one time.

It took a while for that core sample gouge to heal, too. Biopsies may be essential in some situations…but I’ll avoid them if at all possible.

Besides, cancer lumps don’t come and go. That’s the indicator, right there. If the swelling in my lymph nodes could be reduced at times, it was not a cancer problem.

The first sure test of that came up about three months ago. I’d been working out, lifting weights over my head in front of a mirror in order to monitor my form, when I noticed the right side of my neck seemed to have a lump that shouldn’t be there.

Sure enough. The lymph node under my right jaw was always the first to swell whenever infection came along, but this swollen neck thing was a new and revolting development. It wasn’t overly painful–just slightly tender to the touch–but obviously needed to be dealt with.

We always have leftover antibiotics on hand. MD’s will prescribe them at times when neither my wife nor I think they’re a good idea, but we’ve learned that when it comes to battling with doctors, it’s best to pick your battles if you want to keep your present practitioner. So we accept the prescriptions but don’t always take them, simply storing the antibiotics in case we decide later that we really do need them.

The other always-on-hand item is colloidal silver. Pam won’t use it any more despite the fact that it literally saved her life in 2005. She’s afraid she’ll turn blue and would prefer to die than do that.

Vanity much?

Anyway, I took antibiotics for a few days, chased it with colloidal silver (scientists are now discovering that amping up antibiotics with silver greatly amps up the effectiveness of the antibiotics), and the neck swelling went away just fine.

Until a couple of weeks ago, that is.

This time, the swelling was worse. There were swollen lymph node lumps running all around to the back of my neck (on the right side) and down almost to the clavicle.

Hm.

Going back on antibiotics this soon after the last go-round didn’t sound quite right, but I tried it–with colloidal silver reinforcement as usual.

It didn’t work.

Oh, it worked some. Enough to reduce the swelling temporarily…but then the tide reversed once again. The lumps were increasing in size. Time to bag the antibiotics (and silver)…as soon as I could figure out the next step.

That turned out to be apple cider vinegar. There are several great sites online where ACV (apple cider vinegar) users detail their experiences with the stuff. It’s been used medically since the time of Hippocrates. Nine out of ten people commenting online report positive (gland shrinking) results. Since it also helps alkalinize the body by encouraging the pancreas to kick out more sodium bicarbonate, and since that’s a good thing, some users have taken to sipping ACV diluted in water all day long. Others take down straight shots, either chasing it with water or just…doing the shooters.

Hey, why not? I’d tried apple cider vinegar once before, long enough to prove to myself that it didn’t do squat against a full blown head cold, but this might be different. Safeway had some great stuff, too, Bragg’s Organic Apple Cider Vinegar, in business for more than 100 years.

I found out three things:

1. Sipping didn’t work for me. I’ve gotten acclimated to sipping ice water all day, but adding even a little ACV was enough to get me to…quit drinking water. Not a good thing.

2. Straight tablespoons (not full shots) worked best as long as I immediately chased the cider vinegar with water. Bragg’s is so strong that it stings the back of my throat harder than anything else since Everclear (nearly pure alcohol), which I’ve not tried since I was in my twenties.

3. The ACV got some initial results…but whatever this infection might be that I’m fighting, it’s a toughie. The first day of using ACV, the overall swelling went down by a good fifty percent, but just like with the antibiotics and silver, the luck did not hold.

I needed something more.

Could bouncing on a mini-trampoline get swollen lymph glands to clear themselves?

Could bouncing on a mini-trampoline get swollen lymph glands to clear themselves?

One evening while I was sitting at the computer, pondering, the mini-trampoline suddenly came to mind. Would it work to clear lymph gland infection?

It just might, I thought. My ex and I had once owned a mini-tramp, back in California during the late 1980’s. I’d used it a handful of times, after which–like most exercise equipment–it went to the garage and was never touched again. We didn’t even bother to take it with us when we moved to Montana in 1989.

However, it made sense. The following day, having to make a run to Sierra Vista anyway, I stopped at our local Big 5 store. There were no other customers in sight, but four ladies stood behind the front counter, pretty much elbow to elbow.

“How can we help you?” The least unattractive gal asked, and I answered,

“Do you have any mini-tramps here?”

Fortunately, none of the females clobbered me. Either the remark went over their heads, or they didn’t care. All my partner in conversation said was, “Yes, we do!”

They had two sizes, a 40 incher and a 48 incher. I picked the big one, mostly so I’d be less likely to fall off.

Grimly enough, bouncing around on a mini-trampoline turned out to be anything but fun. As a young buck, I was a pro athlete on the rodeo circuit, but Pam watched me bouncing rather rigidly and observed that it looked like I had a broomstick taped to my spine. She was right. Also, the tendons behind both knees were killing me after less than a minute of bouncing.

Sheesh.

However, things began to loosen up after the second minute. I made it for six minutes that time–which was enough for starters in 103 degree sunshine. We can’t put a mini-tramp in the house; our ceilings in the home I built by hand are way too low for that.

Impressively, the glands were down noticeably at the end of the hopping stint.

Vibration seemed like it might indeed be a key.

But wait. There’s more.

The 4 cycle Ryobi brush cutter vibration turned out to a great reducing agent for swollen lymph glands.

The 4 cycle Ryobi brush cutter vibration turned out to a great reducing agent for swollen lymph glands.

This year in southern Arizona, the monsoon rains have been phenomenal, producing so much overgrown vegetation that in many places our patch of the Sonoran desert looks more like a jungle during this fine, hot August of 2013. It occurred to me that if jumping up and down on a mini-trampoline was helpful for reducing swollen lymph glands, perhaps rattling my physical body’s cage with the vibrations of a gas powered Ryobi brush cutter might do even better.

So, after taking a break to get cooled down and rehydrated, I fired up the green beast. Whacking a clear path from the house to the laundry shed (over the top of driveway gravel, no less) took another hour or more.

When the deed was done, the glands were noticeably less swollen.

This was important primarily because it’s easier for me to work for an hour than to officially exercise for a minute. If I’ve got a job to do, time flies. If I must exercise, time goes in reverse and bites me in the rear.

All right, then. I kept up the apple cider vinegar intake. After all, you never know, and the alkalizing effect couldn’t hurt. Overall, though, things were looking good. The butterfly hanging around on local mesquite stems seemed to symbolize my good fortune. The swollen glands were about to “flutter by”.

The butterfly, of a species we'd not seen before, hanging out on the mesquite....

The butterfly hanging around on local mesquite stems seemed to symbolize my good fortune.

The next morning, the swelling had once again increased a bit.

All right. Time to drag out the mini-tramp. This time, I managed to stay atop the silly thing for a full ten minutes, but it wasn’t easy. In fact, building our house was easier, emotionally speaking. Various joints acted up, griping not at the strain but at being bored to the point of complaining.

One more night, up in the morning–and the thought of bouncing on that beautiful yet unattractive mini-tramp was revolting.

The Ryobi brush cutter needed new blades after having been battered against all those driveway rocks two days earlier. The nodes were…how were they? Hm. About a third of maximum swelling. Much, much better, but not quite fully fixed yet.

I could go to Home Depot, see if they had replacement blades for the brush cutter. Yeah. I could do that…or I could take a hike around the property, packing both camera and camcorder, taking pictures of wildflowers and seeing how many illegal immigrant tracks I could find heading north through our property.

Yeah. There was a plan. For nearly an hour in the a.m., I took pictures of morning glory blooms. They’re not native to this desert, but we’ve got them now, ever since high flying, superheated gas clouds from the Monument Fire of 2011 dumped uncounted numbers of seeds all over this acreage. The vine-borne blossoms blanketed the land that summer, barely made an appearance in 2012, then roared back with a vengeance after the major rain dumps this year.

The morning glory blossoms...came roaring back after the major rain dumps this year.

The morning glory blossoms…came roaring back after the major rain dumps this year.

Time for a nap. I usually write all night, rack out for a few hours before and after dawn, get up to help my wife for a while, then catch a few more zzz’s from late morning until early afternoon.

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“Pam,” I told my sweetheart later in the day, “I think I’ll take a hike around the property. I should be back by four.” It was only a few minutes after three.

“Okay. See you when you get back.”

When I did get back, it was five p.m. and my wife was nearly in tears. This area is what people from northern Arizona call the Mouth of the Dragon. Illegal immigrants and drug runners have regular routes running from the Border (one mile to the south) on up to safe houses in Sierra Vista and beyond. Our rattlesnakes are mostly Mojave greens, the deadliest pit vipers on the continent. When I hadn’t returned at the appointed time–and knowing I tend to be punctual–she’d begun to worry. When I didn’t answer my phone, she’d come close to panic.

Her son had calmed her a bit when she called him. “If Fred was in trouble, Mom, he’d have called.”

The thing was, she had not called my phone at all. I’d felt no vibration, but most of all, there was no voice mail message, no record of a missed call. Nothing. Most likely, she’d hit the wrong speed dial number, but you can’t convince her of that.

Nonetheless, the miracle had finally happened. My swollen lymph nodes were no longer swollen. Oh, there’s still a bit of swelling under the jawline, but no more than I’ve been used to for the past 70 years. Nothing back around on the side of the neck, reminding me of Senator John McCain’s lumpjaw.

Walking turned out to be the key secret. How about that?

I’m good at walking.

Besides, it seems right. We humans were not evolved to be sedentary. Our forebears were hunters and gatherers, homo sapiens who knew that to stop moving meant death.

And there you have it. I’m continuing to take apple cider vinegar, a minimum of three separate tablespoons per day. I didn’t do any excessive walking today. The mini-tramp has not been touched for two days in a row. This is the first full day (24 hour period) with neither of those remedies being applied, and the glands–uh, nodes–are “staying down”, at least for the moment.

That’s my experience to date. Feel free to share yours in the Comments.

Simon Says 001

UPDATE: September 22, 2013

Recently, at least two viewers of this page found it by searching for swollen lymph glands caused by lifting weights, especially lifting over one’s head. Those keyword searches prompted me to say this about that:

I hadn’t thought about the possibility, but it could be that heavy weight lifting really can trigger swollen lymph glands. I say this because for several months (3 or 4 at least) prior to noticing my own swollen nodes, I’d been doing just that–lifting weights over my head. I’m crowding 70 years of age, had realized that my military press capability had gone way down in the last 50 years, and decided to build my strength back up for that particular lift.

Our home has low ceilings, so using a barbell would have been problematic. The weights would have impacted the ceiling boards with every lift. So, instead, I used a pair of 25 pound dumbbells, one in each hand, but lifted them simultaneously as if there were an invisible bar running between them. The idea was that when I’d gotten the reps high enough–three sets totaling at least 100 reps–I’d move up to 30 pounders, and go from there.

As it happened, I was just about ready to do that (move up to 30 pounders) when I realized the few minutes of heavy lifting every night…seemed to be creating a problem in my left shoulder. After a few weeks of thinking that over, I quit the overhead lifting entirely.

But the swollen glands, I now realize (after thinking back), were noticed while I was still lifting, a week or two before I quit.

Summary: I don’t know for a fact that the lifting triggered the gland swelling, but it certainly does seem coincidental, and I do not believe in coincidence. You’ll need to draw your own conclusions, of course.

And finally, now that some weeks have passed since I first wrote this article, how are my lymph nodes doing?

Well, not bad, really. I’ve quit the vinegar entirely. It’s nasty stuff, and it didn’t seem to be doing anything worthwhile that I could tell. I’ve never gotten back on the mini trampoline since those first two sessions. But any form of mild thumping (fingertips) near a swollen gland does seem to help, and walking is still my Holy Grail of node swelling reduction.

I finally realized there were swollen lymph spots all over my body–neck, right armpit, right side of groin, left rear side of skull, etc. But they’re all pretty much under control at this point. That is, when they do get big enough to be worrisome (or just plain irritating), I can get them back to a “low roar” in short order.

UPDATE: October 2, 2014

It was necessary to wait until I was sure to post this latest tidbit, but I can now say with confidence that, for me at least, nothing works better to reduce lymph node swelling(s) than a simple wand massager with a “buzz” setting that vibrates vigorously. During the year following the last update, nodes running down both sides of my neck were proving stubbornly problematic. I’ll spare you the unimportant details, but for a period of several months–with nothing else working, including walking–I tried a fairly lengthy regimen of supplements form the Nature’s Sunshine company that are specifically designed to cleanse and drain lymph nodes.

The supplements worked…sort of. But the improvement only went so far, and that wasn’t far enough.

Then about three weeks ago, I bought a wand massager. Moving the vibrator head slowly along the swollen nodes for 15 minutes a day produced remarkable–and more importantly, consistent–results. I do have to confess to being on the lazy side and a bit lackadaisical about my self discipline; when the nodes are knocked down far enough that they don’t “bug” me, I wind up skipping the daily massaging routine until the swelling increases enough to once again be bothersome.

But the massager works.

One of the beautiful things about using a wand massager is that it’s easy to find a way to let the time pass while the massage motor is running. My favorite method is to hold the massager in my left hand so my right hand is free to click my computer’s mouse during a game of Hearts.

32 thoughts on “How To Deal with Swollen Lymph Glands (Nodes)

  1. Hello there! I know this is somewhat off topic but I was wondering which blog platform are you using for this site? I’m getting fed up of WordPress because I’ve had issues with hackers and I’m looking at alternatives for another platform. I would be great if you could point me in the direction of a good platform.

  2. I’m using DreamHost for web hosting and WordPress (Theme 2011) for the software. Love this platform and have not had issues with hackers, but then that could be in part because they type of articles I write really don’t offer much reward to hackers in the first place.

    I don’t know enough about alternative platforms to point you to anything else. On this site, the only problem I had was with comment spam, and the Akismet plugin solved that rather neatly.

  3. Interesting. I have Cider Vinegar in my fridge and been with the virus of quinkun- something-i always forget the name of the damn thing- for 5 days and today my nodes are inflamed to the point of hurting. Adding up the fact that i have been 5 days on bed. Little walks only from my bed to the bathroom and back. Im gonna try what you say.

  4. Maya R. and Cat: I hope both of you happen back by to catch my latest update–which I just posted, thanks to your comments bringing my attention to the task.

    During late 2013 and through the early summer of 2014, my nodes reached the point that they were laughing at Bragg’s (cider), walking, the whole bit. But I lucked out a while back and thought to try a wand massager. The details are in the new (October 2, 2014) update posted above.

    Thanks for commenting, and best of luck in whipping your nodes back into shape.

  5. wow this was such a great find I too live in the Phoenix area and my onset of lymph nodes happened out of nowhere in May of this year and still are swollen; I read that ACV and jumping circulates the blood and I have had a desk job for a a year and a half now so maybe that’s what I need is to just hike more like I used to and ACV too;*thank you so much* for sharing your story and update; I’ll have to get a massager for the specific area in my neck too

  6. You’re welcome, Erika, and thanks for commenting. It’s feedback from my readers that keep me “pumped” as a writer, for sure–especially feedback that indicates a post like this one may actually be helping people a bit here and there.

  7. Last night I happened to be looking in the mirror and pushing on my glands just to check when under my right ear in towards my jaw I felt it. Large and swollen. Very tender to the touch. I’m active at work “Plumbing contractor” I’m always moving. Granted in my 20 I moved a lot more. The swollen mass is below my right ear on my jaw line. Its spring in the upstate of sc which means pollen pollen pollen and the some more pollen. Literally leaving this green power over everything and I mean everything. I’ve always had allergies but when I moved from the beaches of long island to the mountains of sc my allergies got a jump start. Now 42 and here for 10 yrs I seem to be getting worse rather than better. BTW I too do not goto the doc for every little thing. At my age maybe I need to.

  8. It probably couldn’t hurt to have a doctor check it out, Bill. I continue to battle with my swollen nodes and also continue to get mixed results, occasionally getting a set of “problem nodes” pretty flat and then seeing them pop up somewhere else (or again in the same spots, either way). But few if any of mine are ever tender to the touch. I recently tried using the services of a massage therapist specially trained in techniques aimed at draining the nodes, and again, with mixed results. One really ugly flare under the jawline and high on the side of the neck did recede nicely within a few days after the treatment; other areas didn’t change much.

  9. Thank you for sharing your story. I used your vibration trick. I jumped back on my motorcycle after it sitting for a year while I healed a pink ribbon surgery and nursed swollen lymph nodes for months. First day on my bike, I felt clumsy and a bit scared, and I am a well seasoned rider. After five hours of riding, the nodes were calmer, smaller. I have been riding everyday since and feeling my confidence and strength coming back. I wrote a story explaining the “if I have to explain, you wouldn’t understand” saying. I think the motorcycle is helping the nodes, though they, like yours are fluctuating now. I take that as a good sign and it is certainly helping my spirit. All because of your story! Be well my friend. Live long and enjoy every minute! Dawn in SoCal. Oh, I am from the Sonoran desert too, if you want to call Scottsdale the Sonoran. I miss it and consider moving to Tucson on a regular basis. The desert has so much soul!

  10. Thanks for commenting, Dawn. I totally understand your nerves after letting your scoot sit for a year. I sold my last motorcycle in 2007 after Pam got so busted up she couldn’t ride behind me any more–not that I didn’t love riding solo, but it didn’t seem right if she couldn’t partake. And more than once a lengthy layoff from riding gave me that same set of nerves to which you refer.

    Glad the post helped get you going, and if you do decide to return to the desert, hey, welcome back!

  11. lol I like how it started out as saying apple cider vinegar works and ends with get a wand massager lmao

  12. Right, Sam…and the changes haven’t stopped to this day. I still haven’t completely whipped the swollen node problem. Just this year, I’ve gone through a massage therapist, an acupuncturist, and had an in depth consultation with a spiritual counselor (not religious) I deeply trust and respect. While the results are not yet in for that last one, I’ve already added yet another item since the consultation: A book I purchased from Amazon titled Lymph Drainage Massage, by Ramona Moody French. At the very least, I now know a lot more about the lymph system and how it works….:)

  13. I’m 39, a mom of 4 great kids and married to a wonderful husband. He is all about going to a doctor for all his health care needs but I loooove to find “alternative” medicines/ help whenever possible. Your article is great and I appreciate your enthusiasm trying out many options that are obviously out there!
    The glands in my throat are both swollen and I have a hard time swallowing and I am miserable to say the least. It’ll be ACV, lots of walking( which I love) and off to the store to find one of those cute little handheld massager number in the morning.
    Again thank you for sharing your advice and I hope you’ll find great balance for you problem.

  14. Thanks for commenting, Andrea. I’m certainly with you regarding alternative health solutions. Especially the walking, though my plate keeps getting enough piled on it to keep that down to less than it should be. (I did manage to climb up and down a ladder a bunch of times today, but I’m not sure that counts.) Your hope for my great balance (finding it) is appreciated, and I truly wish you well in getting your nodes flattened, so to speak. Difficulty swallowing is never a fun thing.

  15. Glad i found this article, this is my first lymph node flare up right behind my right ear and lower jaw. I went to a chiropractor and he adjusted my jaw so now the jaw pain is gone but the lymph is still swollen and my right ear feels like its full of water or pressure. I was doing 55 pound military press almost every 2 days and have been an every other day lifter for years. Wondering if there is any correlation? I’m gonna try these techniques and see what happens! let me know if you have any further advice thanks! plus everyone should check out the Bob Beck protocol for these type of things too!

  16. It’s certainly a possibility that the military press could have been a factor, based on my own experience plus the experience of others who’ve noticed a correlation between “overhead lifting” and lymph node swelling–though of course we know that correlation is not necessarily causation.

    The Bob Beck protocol looks intriguing, especially (to me) the Magnetic Pulser…although one YouTube video mentioned that the unit, among other things, “helps stimulate cell division”. That makes me a wee bit wary. Cell division is of course essential, and yet rampant our of control cell division is called cancer. So how would a consumer know when “enough was enough” and not too much? Hm….

    My lymph nodes are still “way swollen” in some areas, most noticeably from halfway down the neck to the collar bone (on both sides) and in my armpits (also on both sides). I’ve become convinced that the causes are more than just physical, but it’s going to be difficult to discuss the nonphysical aspects with readers who simply don’t consider (or believe in) such things. On the other hand, the point is pretty much moot until or unless I see extreme success in “flattening my nodes” long term, so there’s time to ponder…. 🙂

  17. Hi there! I was having trouble with swollen lymph nodes under my left arm. It took me a year to finally figure out the cause – I knew it was something localized in our home or environment, because when we traveled the pain would cease. My swelling was caused by drinking our public water here in the Phoenix area. I have switched to having water delivered to our home and I have not had any problems since. If I even have one glass of water when we go out to dinner, the pain and swelling returns. I drink a lot of water, so I was happy to figure out the cause. We had a RO installed in our kitchen but that didn’t do the trick – drinking water from elsewhere has been my only saving grace.

  18. Thanks, Tracy; that’s a really helpful clue. I don’t THINK my situation is due to the water, in part because we don’t drink our well water and because I’ve never noticed any difference whether I was drinking bottled water at home, however-they-purify-it in the restaurants, or ditto when I’ve traveled. Although admittedly the traveling has never been for more than 10 days at one time, but still.

    However, I HAVE seriously considered the possibility that it’s SOMETHING in my environment…and one of my two sisters (she lives in Montana) developed serious food allergies some years ago, which an allergist helped her figure out. One stress reducing thing we (my wife and I) have done fairly recently is get rid of a couple of major financial drains, helping to support family and friends to the detriment of our own financial health. That has to be a good thing (anything that lowers stress), and I’ve also begun taking Texas Super Food supplements as a way to hopefully counter probable vitamin and/or mineral deficiencies to some extent. (Any true holistic health practitioner would undoubtedly shudder at the rest of my diet, which mostly amounts to meat and potatoes with an occasional salad, never the “55 fruits and veggies” from which Texas Super Food is concentrated.)

    So far, results for these latest developments appear to be promising to some extent, but it’s too early to come to any definitive conclusions. One small but “key indicator” node at the base of my skull, left side, is down and seems to be mostly staying that way, while the rest of the problem nodes are still definitely swollen but no longer “skin tight”. We’ll see.

  19. Hello, my name is Dominick, I am 17 years old and I have noticed that I have a swollen lymph node under the right side of my jaw it is tender to touch and I about the size of a grape. I believe it may be connected to lifting weights but I can not be sure. As I just found it today any feedback related to this problem would be great

  20. Hi, Dominick. I’m still working on my lymph node issues, so–not having solved the issue yet–I certainly don’t qualify as an “expert”, but here goes:

    1. If you look around online and/or talk to doctors, the general “politically correct” approach is to assume the lymph node is fighting and infection, with the every scary possibility of cancer. My wife was terrified I fell into that category when mine first started acting up; now she’s just horrified. But beyond that….

    2. I don’t envy you having a node that is tender to the touch. Most of mine aren’t. Whenever one is, though, it will most certainly get your attention.

    3. I know what you mean about being concerned that weightlifting might have triggered the problem somehow. I’ve had that same concern, especially since I’d been doing nightly military press overhead lifts for several months before first noticing mine. That may or may not have had anything to do with it, however. I just don’t know about that.

    4. Most recently, I’d come to the realization that I probably (thought there’s never a guarantee until done is done) needed to approach the problem with multi-pronged solutions, not just one. We know (a) infection, but also (b) stress can be a major factor. Not just physical stress like lifting weights, but mental/emotional stress as well. However, in my situation–caring for my deeply disabled wife–a lot of that stress is going to hang around as long as she’s alive, and at 17 your life is quite likely nothing BUT stress. (I know there are stress-free teenagers out there, but they’re kind of like Bigfoot in that I’ve never met one.)

    Beyond that, my spiritual life needed fine tuning. Now, if you’re not interested in that, just shine this part on, but I’ve been a follower of a particular faith for forty-plus years and had never asked my spiritual guide directly for help, so I came up with a little song I’m singing daily now–which I mention only because within hours of starting the new “help request song” routine, I got significant relief. The biggest swelling, a node cluster on the right side of my neck, had swollen the skin so tight that turning my neck was a stiff operation and thoroughly unsettling. It went down enough to be comfortable again, though it’s far from flat at this point. In the song, I ask for help, “…as soon as it be good for the whole”. You know, so I don’t put myself in the position of trying to push God, which never works out well.

    Most hopefully, I just ordered a bottle of Eucalyptus Essential Oil from Amazon a few days ago. It’s not here yet, but the literature on eucalyptus sounded like it might actually help. When it gets here, I’ll mix it with coconut oil as a carrier oil, 20 parts coconut to 1 part eucalyptus, and start rubbing a bit of that concoction into the skin where the nodes are swollen, probably on a twice daily basis.

    In the meantime, my wife pointed out that she has some rather greasy chest rub–what we used to know as Vicks VapoRub, but this is generic–and that the rub has eucalyptus in it. Not as much as the essential oil mix will, figuring anything is better than nothing, I started using that yesterday. And one of my swollen nodes just happens to be under the right jaw, like yours. Swelled up when I had a cold three years ago and never went back down. Rubbed in the Vicks imitator, and within 24 hours, the swelling in the under-jaw node was down enough that it can now be felt as two distinct nodes, not one. It’s not totally gone by a long shot, but it’s definitely move in the right direction.

    Don’t know if this helps or nor, but here’s hoping.

  21. Hi pal, your article is really helpful. I had this silly issue under my armpit since last Nov 2015 and it has been occuring on and off. It started with itch and ringworm underarm. I thought it is a hygience problem and I linked it with using expired deodorant. I applied ringworm cream and the ringworm is gone. But at the same time, I realised all the small tiny lymph nodes which I never had in my life before. There are three to four on each side of my armpit. I realised as I applied the cream, the nodes will go off. Then along these months, I asked if carrying heavy weight has any link to the issue and you actually mentioned weight lifting. I don’t do weights, but often carry heavy loads of groceries on both hands. Last year before this issue, I actually did alot of pull ups. At that time, I have no issues with the swollen nodes. Only that I stopped doing the pull up, the swollen lymph came about. I read about ACV or applying tea oil on the skin. You mentioned massaging, yes I read that too. I am really very vexed over this issue.
    It seems that our body is intoxicated. I am very stressed up due to this issue, I am relieved to hear that it is nothing to do with cancer. But I read somewhere saying it might be linked to other parts of body having cancer. So I am worried. I hope God will help all the people having problems like ours.

  22. Thanks for commenting, Brian. I hadn’t heard about the possibility that swollen nodes could be linked to other body parts having cancer. In my case, I doubt that–since, 3 1/2 years into the challenge, each and every node that acts up will also sometimes go back down to some degree, sometimes completely.

    At the moment of this comment, I have to say my nodes are in better shape than they’ve been for some time–far from perfect yet, but better. And at the moment, I’m focusing on 4 things:

    1. Continued use of a combination of eucalyptus and frankincense essential oils (applied topically).

    2. Keeping up with my daily spiritual exercises–which I’m guessing would correlate to prayer for a Muslim or a Christian.

    3. Getting as much spiritual outflow as I can, to attempt to get things in balance. That outflow consists, at the moment, of (a) singing a song I wrote to friends and family and the occasional new acquaintance or business associate, (b) sharing insights with people I stumble across who show an actual interest, (c) writing on spiritual matters and/or science fiction novels that also incorporate some of the spiritual principles, and (d) staying open to the idea of service to others as appropriate opportunities arise.

    4. Singing my healing song at least once through, each day.

    Most western medical doctors, at least those I’ve met, would probably scoff at the idea of “balance” being the key, but eastern medicine practitioners are more likely to nod knowingly. As for me, I suppose the jury is still out to some degree, until the situation is completely cured for a meaningful length of time.

  23. Yes pal, for my case, the nodes will just go away on its own. Or when i apply cream or essential oil, they will be gone.
    But there must be some underlying issues which I am trying to correlate to the nodes or iron out altogether.
    I think drinking ACV is a good thing. It will alkalize the body and surely will help to some degree. I feel that for this node issues, it has to do with toxin in the body I feel.
    Anyway, am glad you are using spiritual as a form of healing.

  24. Good to hear your nodes “back off” a bit more (in between flare-ups) more than mine have done recently. I agree there must be some underlying issues.

    In my case, one issue that may yet be around for a while is, simply put, stress. I don’t feel particularly stressed, but long ago learned that even when my mind seems to be clear on that front, my body may have other ideas. And since my wife is deeply disabled on a number of fronts–with her health issues starting to show in a big way more than 17 years ago–it’s quite possible being her primary caretaker has begun to take its toll. Hard to say for sure.

  25. Hello I was on this thread awhile back after doing some research ive found a couple people that have really helped me, first is Dr. Robert Cassar his videos can ne found on YouTube and hes a big advocate of the GuaSha technique along with Sauna for lymph flow and detox. I can vouch that the sauna really does work, i go in as long as i can stand which ends up being about 30-45 minutes and i make sure to bring water, very important, you could even put some ACV in the water (1 tbs) for added minerals about 32oz and drink about 5 sips every 5 minutes you are on the sauna really work up a good sweat refer to Dr. Cassars videos for more thorough info. My lymph shrinks every time i do this. Second person i suggest is Dr. Robert Morse his videos can also be found on YouTube and he has a lot of info on lymph detox. Hope this helps and definitely try a sauna I would say a good quality infra red sauna is best however a regular sauna will work fine too. I have yet to try a lymph drainage massage but its worth a try and ive heard good things.

    Ive heard a mini trampoline can be a bit harsh on kidneys but i dont know the validity of the claim.

  26. Hi Ozan,
    Yes I was about to mention guasha or sauna. They say you need to lose sweat to clear the toxin in the body. I am a singaporean chinese, so we hear a little on tradtional chinese way of treating. Thanks for your tips too.

    I also do agree stress might be linked to this issue.

    I pray that all of you (including myself) are able to resolve our own issues soon. God bless each of you.

  27. Ozan and Brian: Thanks to both of you. Hadn’t thought of trying a sauna, mainly because the only time I ever did (in the company of my mostly Finnish ex-wife, in a hotel near a swimming pool), the results were either horrendous or hilarious, depending on your perspective. Don’t believe I lasted more than ten minutes at most. She was enjoying herself immensely, still “normal color” and breathing easy, as I burst out from the sauna, red as a beet, shouting, “It’s a good day to die!”…and cannonballed into the pool. She almost hurt herself, laughing so hard.

    But there might be a related option for me…someday. Recently installed a high-end walk-in bathtub for my wife. Nobody gets to use it but her for as long as she lives, which is why it’s a “someday” thing for me, but ten minutes of plenty-warm bubbly-jet water is enough to take her tiny little (84 lb.) body from icy to cold to overheated and ready to exit, so…we’ll see.

    May the blessings be.

  28. Breathing is key. By that I mean learning how to breathe. Another is using certain techniques on our wonderfully made bodies. Look up acupressure and also massaging the lymphatic system using the hand in a light dragiging motion or a cupping motion. Lymph nodes run throughout our beautiful selves. The system is referred to as the waste system of the body which must be allowed to flow freely at all times. Swelling is just a design the the creator installed to alert us that our system is backing up and could use a hand. What you always want to do is to pull that fluid towards the heart.
    Also, there are dips in areas of the body and you want to pull the fluid into those dips and then pull it toward the heart because the heart is a pump and that’s what you want the fluid to do is make its rounds throughout the body constantly.
    You can also use a tennis ball to roll over and across the lymphatic and then in a pulling motion with your fingers carry them lightly over the skin towards the heart. Vibration is excellent for the body. Nothing too vigorous though. I use a handheld neutrogena battery operated facial cleaner. I remove the pad that is used on the face and I just massage my head, neck, face, shoulder, chest/back, the dips at the collar bone above and below, even the arm, knee and ankle pits, the arms legs, and wrist and the dips located right above the buttocks and the and the frontal thigh area dip, also three most important the eyes even if you have to cover them with doff cloth and lightly message even the ball itself, the ears front and back, above and beneath, the lips and gum, chin and thyroid areas, beneath the jawls, the nose and sinus, the temples and the soft spot at the top of the head where the seat of the soul is said to be. The cords that run from the back of the head, the side of the neck and the top of the back, the area beneath the armpits and the side and rib age. The dip directly at the center of the chest and the very top of the stomach. I get the benefit of the breathing as I am massaging, I get the feel good from the massage itself, the circulation of blood flow and lymph flow pumping through me waking up my sluggish system that was feeling neglected. I get the benefit of the vibration making waves with my universal being reminding me that stimulation is one of the main keys to life, health and strength. Most importantly, I get to get my praise on. I say, “Do you know how awesome you are. Let men say what they will, but between me and you, I refuse to accept a Big Bang theory, I chuckle and ask, do you laugh every time you hear it? I know that you’re there and even though I cannot fathom the working of your ways and your thoughts at least allow me to bless you. Can I brag about you to all the nations? Is it ok that I share a little of what you’ve made known to me so that others can come forward and praise too. Tesla said it best,”energy, vibration, frequency”, but the scripture call it Light. Blessings to all and in the meantime, keep it moving. Circulation brings transformation, rejuvenation and cause for celebration

  29. Amber, I have not tried the turpentine protocol, in part because I’d never heard of it until you mentioned it. Looks like I’ll need to do some research on that one now; thanks.

    That said, I’m having luck with the “near death” protocol. In October and November of 2016, my wife was hospitalized and it looked like she was going to die–in fact, was shipped off to a hospice to do so, but that made her so mad that she snapped back and came out of hospice ALIVE in 4 1/2 days. Meanwhile, I believe I’d (not intentionally at the conscious level) taken on some of her karma. Got sick myself, and after she was up and semi-functional again, it got worse. On December 5, I was (at home) lying in bed so far depleted (sinusitis that had progressed to involve throat, right ear, and right lung) that I had NO emotions. Not until getting on the FIFTH different antibiotic did I start to snap back, returning to “close to full” health around January 8th.

    And once I got on that particular antibiotic (as of December 29), the lymph nodes–which had REALLY swollen during the 2 months of sinusitis symptoms)–began to shrink. As of today, they’re no more than 1/4 the size they were for years prior. Not completely down, but far better results than anything else to date, so it looks like, yeah, there has been an infection in there that was resistant to everything else.

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