Thanksgiving is high on everybody’s list of favorite holidays, and with good reason. We get together with loved ones, eat wonderful food, and take the time to think about all of the things in our life for which we’re grateful. Unfortunately and ironically, the holiday is one that can also lead to back injuries and pain. You don’t want your holiday weekend to be marred by discomfort, so take a minute to read about the three most common ways that Thanksgiving can lead to back pain, as well as what you can do to make sure that it doesn’t happen to you.
Over the River and Through the Woods?
Whether you’re on your way to Grandma’s house or visiting anybody else who’s dear to you, sitting in a car or cramped airplane seat for long periods of time can ruin your holiday before it even starts. There are inflatable lumbar pillows that you can bring with you to make sure you get the support that you need, or in a pinch, you can roll up a magazine, newspaper, sweater or jacket. It’s also a good idea to take a break every hour or two. Walking around for just 5 minutes will give you the opportunity to stretch out your muscles and relieve any compression that you’re feeling.
Slaving Over a Hot Stove for Hours?
Without a doubt, the delicious food is a big part of the holiday, and that food doesn’t magically appear. If you’re the one who is always responsible for the meal planning, grocery shopping, cooking and clean up, then there’s no doubt you’re familiar with the aching back and exhaustion that follows. Make sure that you have something supportive under your feet – either a cushioned mat in front of the sink and stove or a pair of running shoes. The other thing you need to do is to be kind to yourself: remember to take a break from time to time, and don’t be shy about asking for help. From lifting the heavy turkey from the grocer’s freezer to taking it out of the oven, from setting the table to washing the dishes, the holiday is more fun (and healthier for your back) when everybody pitches in and helps.
Burning Off the Calories with Family Fun
Though some families’ tradition is to recover from the holiday meal by sitting around and watching football, others prefer to play the game themselves. Whether your game is a friendly, non-tackle version or a more competitive game of tackle, remember that the ground is hard, you’re not as young as you used to be, and it’s all fun and games until somebody herniates a disc. Consider a more muted way to spend time – perhaps a fun game of Cards Against Humanity or Scrabble?
We hope your holidays are happy and pain-free, but if you need to see our lumbar spine specialist, give us a call to set up an appointment.