So You're Sick on Your Wedding Day—Now What?

Don't panic! We're here to cure what ails you.

Photography by: Westend61

Of all the things that could go awry on your wedding day—the best man loses his tie, your officiant shows up late, the DJ plays the wrong song for your first dance—nothing strikes more fear in the hearts of brides everywhere than the thought of getting sick. So what should you do if you wake up with a tickle in your throat, a hammer in your head, or a ghastly rumble in your stomach? Read on for our tips on how to get you out of the bathroom and onto the aisle.

Take Precautions

You've heard this advice before, but perhaps it's never been more important to take it to heart than now: We're talking eight hours of sleep a night, gulping down plenty of water, getting some exercise, and washing your hands after using public transit or touching items a lot of people have handled. Put these practices in play in the weeks leading up to your wedding to stay on top of your health. In addition, it's a good idea to avoid foods you don't normally eat a day or two beforehand, in case they don't agree with you.

Avoid These Foods!

Make an Emergency Kit 

Sure, it's smart to bring along breath mints, bobby pins, and stain remover, but your day-of kit should also include over-the-counter meds, especially if you're prone to, say, allergies or UTIs. Hit up the drugstore and put these on your list: ibuprofen for headaches, antacids for heartburn, bismuth (like Pepto-Bismol) for tummy troubles, hydrocortisone cream for hives and rashes, phenazopyridine (such as Uristat) for bladder infections, antihistamines for sniffles, and decongestants and cough syrups for colds. Caveat: Make sure you buy non-drowsy formulas—you don't want to be nodding off during your MOH's toast!

The Ultimate Emergency Kit

Adjust the Day's Schedule 

Unless you're so ill you need to go to the ER, you can adapt the day's proceedings, within reason. Ergo, if lying down for an extra 30 minutes seems just the thing to bring you back to the land of the living, by all means do it! You can ask your officiant to modify the ceremony, making it shorter so you and your fiancé can get right to the vows. Or, have your photographer take portraits of the groom's side first, freeing you up for a little more rest.

Get a Little Help From Your Friends 

No matter what happens (or doesn't) on your wedding day, you will have attendants, siblings, parents, and friends at your disposal. They will want to help you and will do everything they can to make you feel better. So let them, whether that's fetching you a hot tea and heating pad or holding your hair back while you hurl (happens to the best of us). In the end, adrenaline will kick in, you'll rally, and the day will still be the best of your life!

About the Author

Jaime Buerger

A senior editor at MSW, Jaime edits the planning section of the magazine and writes stories on flowers, home décor, stationery, and more. Since she started, she's learned the difference between buttercream and fondant, what the 4Cs of diamonds really measure, and how to properly address both the outer and inner envelopes of an invitation. She also eats more than her fair share of...


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