Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Relieving Headaches This Holiday Season

Relieving Headaches This Holiday Season

For many of us, the holiday season is accompanied by food, family, and oftentimes a headache or two. Headaches are, in fact, one of the most common ailments many patients face during the festive season – albeit literally or figuratively!

When it comes to pain, though, the good news is that headaches don’t have to be a guaranteed side effect of your time off. Luckily, there are ways to relieve your headache and even prevent it happening in the first place. This post offers you some highly effective tips for overcoming your headaches and staving off any future pain. Take a look:

      1.      Warm Showers and Baths

When headaches strike, either from overworked and stressed muscles, or loud noises in your otherwise calm home, having a warm bath or shower does wonders for relieving the pain. Make sure to allocate a fairly quiet part of your day to yourself, run a bath, and relax in the warm water with your favorite book in hand. Ensure that the warm water reaches all the way to the base of your neck, so as to target stiff, inflamed muscles that may be contributing to your headache.

      2.      Light Massaging

Lightly massaging your neck muscles and your temples is a great way to relieve excess tension in the area. Inflamed, stiff muscles tend to get tight and cause headaches, therefore using your fingertips to gently release any pressure is a sure-fire way of relieving the pain. Be sure not to press too hard, as too much pressure may actually aggravate the pain.

      3.      Avoid Loud Sounds and Bright Lights

During the holidays it’s almost impossible to escape uninvited sounds and/or lights in our homes. But, when you have a headache, the best thing to do is to remove yourself from environments that are too bright or noisy. Why not make a room in your house dedicated solely to your relaxation? No gifts, tinsel, or kids allowed! Create a space where you’re able to lie down in silence with your eyes closed – use an eye-mask if you like – therefore allowing your headache not to be aggravated. In this way, your healing time with decrease dramatically and you’ll definitely be able to face the rest of the day with new vigor.

      4.      Watch Those Drinks!

The holiday season also seems to usher in a time of parties, family get-togethers, and morning coffees. And while we all love our java in the morning, be careful not to overdo your caffeine intake. Reach for some nuts or berries to boost your energy if you feel low. Caffeine dramatically increases your chances of experiencing headaches. Truth be told, so does alcohol, I’m afraid. As you might know, drinking too much alcohol can cause you to feel unpleasant the day after. More than that, though, alcohol actually dehydrates you, thus leaving you exposed to a high risk of headaches. If you are drinking alcohol, then, make sure to follow each drink with a healthy amount of H2O!

      5.      Stop Smoking

If you’re a smoker, I realize this is a difficult tip. The truth is, though, smoking decreases your appetite, thereby allowing your energy levels to slump – and low blood sugar often leads to headaches. Try stepping away from the nicotine, as doing so will give you a head start in beating anxiety and stress which also cause headaches.

      6.      Eat Regularly

As the previous tip mentioned, low blood sugar actually increases the frequency and intensity of headaches. Make sure you take care to eat regularly throughout the day, and try not to fill up on foods high in sugar, salt, or fat. Stick to healthier options like nuts, fruits, or vegetables. Whole foods offer a great combination of fiber and slow-release glucose which will help keep your energy levels up and your headaches away.

      7.      Drink Enough Water

Dehydration is a major contributor to the frequency of headaches. If you’re loading up on soda, coffee, or tea, but you’re not drinking enough water during the day, you’re likely to have a headache at some point. Not only does water flush out toxins from your body, but it also keeps your neck muscles slack and supple, allowing them to stretch with ease – thereby avoiding cramps, seizing, or stiffness… and therefore, headaches. Drink at least 8-10 cups of water a day – the results will surprise you!

The truth is, many headaches can be relieved naturally, and if you’re currently taking painkillers or other medication to overcome your headaches, it’s time to try a different route. Not only are painkillers detrimental to your overall health, they only mask the pain – temporarily, at that. Did you know that one of the best ways to tackle headaches is physical therapy? In fact, a professional, qualified physical therapist is able to find the root cause of the problem and help heal and prevent recurring headaches!

If you’ve never spoken to a PT about your headaches, there is no time like the present! We invite you to contact us, right now, for information on how we can help you ditch the headaches, painkillers, and causes of discomfort. One of our dedicated, friendly PT’s will gladly assist you with any information you may need. 

And there you have it: 7 essential tips for gaining relief from headaches, right now. We know that headaches can be an almost daily occurrence during the festive season, but by trying our helpful tips you’ll be sure to overcome the pain in no time. Some extra things to consider: try avoiding sugar, exercise regularly, and find time to relax during the day. We wish you the very best for this holiday period, and we genuinely encourage you to tackle those headaches, head on! Happy holidays!

Tips To Stay Healthy During the Holidays

Tips To Stay Healthy During the Holidays

The holidays are upon us… and with the festive season comes a feast of cakes, desserts, late night snacks, and indulgent lunches. At this time of year, then, it seems especially difficult to keep healthy and to stay fit. Many of us have children, families, and friends to socialize with during this time, too, and finding an hour or two a day to keep track of our habits and fitness level seems, well, near impossible.

The good news is, though, there is a way. In this post, I’m going to discuss tips for staying healthy and fit this festive season. The health of your body and mind is of utmost importance when it comes to making the most of those special times with your family and loved ones, and staying fit and keeping up good habits means that the risk of injury after the festive season is also reduced.

So, if you’re ready to tackle the holidays healthily, take a look at these helpful tips:

1.       Make time for keeping active

I know that it can be stressful trying to fit in an hour during your busy day for physical activity. The problem is, however, that many of us view our fitness regime as something fixed, a certain activity, for example, or that is must happen in a fixed place. This often hinders our ability to actually DO anything. Why not get creative? Holidays are all about trying to spend as much time with our loved ones as possible, after all. So, why not try doing group activities like, for example, exercise videos, ice skating, basketball, or even just a walk in town? Physical activity doesn’t have to mean an hour in the gym – it can be as simple as sharing a brisk walk through your nearest park with your partner, children, or friends.

2.       Avoid Overeating

Now, you knew this tip was coming, didn’t you? Aren’t we all guilty of having just a little more potato salad, or just one more slice of cake? How about just one more glass of wine, or that last beer in the cooler? Let me let you in on a secret: overeating is a lot less about eating too much than it is about being unaware of WHAT we’re eating. Your body has a built in mechanism for letting you know when you’re full; eating slowly and mindfully gives you the chance to take note of its warning. In addition to staying tuned-in to your body, try eating healthier snacks such as fruits and veggies, and make sure that you’re drinking enough water throughout the day. Including enough fiber and anti-inflammatory foods into your festive diet with help stave off an upset stomach and acid reflux, too.

3.       Give Yourself Downtime

I’m sure you think this sounds a lot easier said than done, especially with kids running around, food to prepare, and your leave not even docked in at work yet. I understand, but allowing yourself to be restful during your stressful holiday period is one of the most important aspects of staying healthy. Why not try and replace the TV screen for a book at night, try meditation for a few minutes a day, or even just sit in the garden with a cup of coffee in the morning? Soothing music, sketching, or even watching a movie you’ve been longing to see will add quality of life to your holiday experience.

4.       Challenge Yourself

Stress can overwhelm us during the holidays – from anxiety about unfinished business projects, to the financial strain of gifts and back-to-school supplies. And yet, it is often during the times of most stress that we find the strength to change those things that hamper our personal growth. So, my challenge is this: do something truly good for yourself. Stretch every day, quit smoking, cook a wholesome meal for your family, ride a bike – anything that makes you feel happier. Now is the time to embrace all the love in your life, and starting a good new habit – and increasing your health by eradicating bad ones – is such a wonderful place to start. There has never been a better time than now!

Because we understand how important time with your loved ones is, we want you to enjoy his festive season healthily, without pain, and without the anxiety that can accompany it. If you are currently suffering from physical pain that stops you from truly embracing the happiness of the festive season, or you’re in any physical comfort that deters you from trying the tips above, I invite you to call us today for more information on how one of our qualified, professional physical therapists can help you. Physical therapy is the fastest, most effective way of relieving pain and fixing the root cause of the problem so that you no longer have to worry about discomfort, early nights, painkillers, or missed social events. We want this festive season to be undeniably special – call us today for more information on how we can help you, right now!

So, there you have it: tips for how to stay healthy and fit this festive season. Being healthy doesn’t have to mean overhauling your entire life – it doesn’t even mean you can’t have an extra piece of cake, really. It means that you’re mindful and aware of your body, of the strains you face, and of ways in which to deal with that stress. Making time for some exercise, including some downtime, stretching, and eating well, will all help you get back into your normal routine when the New Year rolls around. Don’t let this festive derail you of your healthy habits, activity levels, or goals – keep aware of how you spend your time, make the most of it, and don’t be afraid to get creative. From all of us here, we hope you have a wonderful, healthy, and pain free Christmas! Happy holidays!