• Chronic Back Pain and The Holidays!

    by Dr. Shawn Henry
    on Nov 20th, 2018

During the holidays, if you have a chronic back pain, it’s vital that you avoid or adjust certain activities for a pain-free holiday season.

We have put together a list of the top holiday activities that can put pressure on your chronic back pain. Consider using our “Better Options” when you find yourself in these situations!

  1. Decorating the tree

Between lugging that 7-foot Douglas fir home and getting it situated straight in the stand, carrying the boxes of ornaments and decorations down from the attic, and stringing lights on that palm tree in your front yard, you’re basically asking Santa for a backache.

A Better Option: Don’t hesitate to ask for help. You don’t need to be a hero and do all the heavy lifting and decorating yourself. Get the tree delivered, have your kids take care of the ornaments and skip the outdoor lights this year, as anything with repetitive reach and twisting is especially risky for your back.

  1. Shopping at the mall

Holiday shopping is fun in theory. In actuality, you’re looking at crowds, long lines at the checkout counters and hours spent carrying heavy and awkwardly shaped bags full of presents.

A Better Option: Do yourself — and your back — a favor and do your shopping online.

  1. Cooking

You would think standing would be good for your back, and it can be. But if you’re standing for hours on end while baking and decorating three different kinds of cookies, it’s a recipe for disaster.

A Better Option: Wear comfortable and supportive shoes, stand on a rubber mat to ease the pressure on your spine, practice good posture and take frequent breaks to move around and stretch your back, shoulders, and neck, ideally every 30 minutes.

  1. Lugging heavy luggage

You’re so excited to see your baby sister that you can’t wait to graciously welcome her into your home, so of course, you want to carry all the luggage and gifts she and her three kids brought along.

A Better Option: Take a minute to remember everything you know about lifting heavy items correctly. Bend from your knees, not your waist, and don’t carry more than you can handle.

  1. Traveling

As with decorating the tree, traveling is rife with pitfalls for your back. There’s the aforementioned heavy luggage, no shortage of interminable lines to wait in from the check-in to security to embarking on the plane, and seats that were made for someone one-fourth your size. 

A Better Option: Always lift your bags properly, and check them in at your earliest opportunity. Send presents ahead of time so you have less to carry and can make it through the security line faster. As for that plane ride, consider bringing a small pillow for additional lumbar support. And get up, walk around and stretch at every opportunity.

If you suffer from back pain, consult Dr. Shawn Henry at Texas Spine Solutions in Fort Worth, Texas.

If you are in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, book an appointment by calling 817-380-9908 or by visiting https://www.drshawnhenry.com/contactus

Author Dr. Shawn Henry Texas Spine Solutions

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