Wednesday, December 6, 2006

December Possibly Worst Month for Back Pain Sufferers

December Possibly Worst Month for Back Pain Sufferers

Holiday Stress, Diet, Muscle Imbalance and Cold Weather to Blame

Gaithersburg, MD (PRWEB) January 1, 2011

Back Pain sufferers see a rise in the amount of pain they have to manage during the holiday season due to the stress, bad eating habits, and the long cramped hours spent indoors. All three of these are exacerbated by the winter weather that descends in December. However, there are strategies to combat them.

In December our activities center around the home, we stand around waiting in long lines at the stores, we pick up longer hours at work, and we travel long distances in cramped spaces and much more. This is why many people feel extra tired around the holiday season.

Then there's the stress of dealing with family, the financial costs associated with the gift giving season, with travel arrangements, with planning holiday parties, and the fact that there seems to be so much in general to get done. In fact, the holiday season is the most stressful time of the year for most families.

Additionally, the season drives many people to eat out during most of the month of December because they find they are frequently on the road in the few hours after work that they have left to get their 'to do' list done in time for the holidays. As a result, our diets change dramatically in the lead up to the holiday, which is compounded at the end of the month by traditional holiday foods. These are usually the kinds of high sodium, high fat foods that help to inflame back pain.

Over the years, Jesse Cannone and Steve Hefferon of LoseTheBackPain. com have noticed a pattern of increased pain at the start of winter, which is all the more aggravated by the things we typically do to prepare for the holidays. As Jesse put it,

"We're now heading into winter weather. That means much less physical activity outside, which means a whole lot more sitting around. Couple that with the fact that millions of Americans will be stuck in cars or on airplanes in holiday travel and we've got muscle imbalance galore."

But the Healthy back Institute has some tips to help alleviate back pain for sufferers during this trying season:

1. Travelers who will be driving should stop and do stretches every time they stop for gas. You can stretch your hip flexors by putting one foot up on the bumper while leaning forward. While you¹re riding in the car, stretch your neck by nodding forward, backward, and side to side.

2. Deal with holiday stress by avoiding stressful people and/or negative situations as much as you can. Take 30-seconds to do a couple of deep breathing exercises outside (breathing deeply from the belly, not the chest), before you walk into a stressful holiday party. When you're at the party, take a restroom break to do some more breathing exercises and do a stretch or two there. You¹ll be refreshed and less likely to let stressful situations and people get to you.

3. Holiday eaters should avoid over-indulging on food and alcohol during the holidays. One way to do this is to stay hydrated. Here's a rule you can follow: for every glass of wine, every cup of eggnog, every hot toddy you drink, drink a glass of water.

Fitness and rehabilitation expert Jesse Cannone and massage therapist Steve Hefferon have been helping back pain sufferers to self-assess and treat their chronic back pain with a variety of holistic approaches and natural remedies, through their comprehensive and informative website: LoseTheBackPain. com.