It’s the holiday season, known for its bright lights, presents, family time, and celebration. But here at Spine Center Atlanta, it’s also known for its surprisingly high spike in back pain. Holiday back pain is a common challenge that affects thousands of Atlantans every year. For those that already struggle with back pain, make sure you take precautions so that your holiday isn’t ruined by holiday back discomfort.
WHY IS THE HOLIDAYS PRONE TO BACK PAIN?
There are many different reasons that the holidays are prone to back pain. Some of them are even for “fun” reasons, but back pain doesn’t necessarily care that you’re having a good time. The most common causes of holiday back pain include:
- Traveling – Sitting on a plane or in a car can put a lot of pressure on the back.
- Lifting – Lifting heavy presents or moving furniture for guests can create back pain.
- Hanging Decorations – Decorating a home often means contorting the lower back.
- Stress – Holidays can be stressful, from planning to family to finances.
- Lounging – For those that are able to relax, lounging too often can also cause aches.
These are only some of the many different changes that take place over the holidays, all of which can contribute to unexpected or more severe back pain.
TIPS TO AVOID BACK PAIN THIS HOLIDAY SEASON
- Know Your Limits – If you haven’t been able to lift heavy items or stretch to the ceiling in several years, it may not be time to start now. Be gentle and careful when you lift gifts, hang up items, or perform other activities and avoid doing anything your body is not ready for.
- Rest Often – When some degree of work is unavoidable (such as cleaning the house for guests), make sure you do not do it all at once. Let yourself rest every once in a while and recover. If you still have your strength and energy, you will be less likely to overwork your muscles.
- Eat Well and Drink Water – Vitamins and hydration are always important for combatting back pain, and yet during the holidays it’s not uncommon to eat only fattening family foods while drinking only a few eggnogs and champagne.
- Relax (with Walking) – The holidays can be stressful. Make sure you take some time for yourself to relax and relieve some of that stress and tension. If you are okay braving the colder air, try taking some relaxing walks so that you’re not also lounging too frequently.
- Prioritize You – Much of the holiday time is spent catering to other people. From buying expensive gifts that cause you financial stress to trying to make the house look good for guests. But you’ll struggle to enjoy the fruits of that labor if you’re not prioritizing yourself. If you need to spend less, move less, stretch, or even take time away from everyone to relax, it is worth it to prevent your back discomfort.
Avoid Holiday Back Pain
The holiday season is meant to be something for you and your family to enjoy. But few can enjoy it when struggling with back pain. This year, try to avoid engaging in back pain causing activities, and have a great holiday from us here at Spine Center Atlanta.