5 tips to reduce back pain this festive season

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Festivals often bring about a change in our daily routine. Our diet, sleeping pattern and schedule in general changes.  It is also probably one of the busiest times of the year with all the holiday shopping, cooking, get-togethers and travelling to see friends. Whether you are a chronic back pain patient or a someone without any back-pain symptoms, it is important to exercise caution to prevent an aching back during this busy period. Attention to some simple tasks can make all the difference.Stay active: The festive season comes with a lot of social commitments which disrupts your daily fitness routine. Visiting relatives, travelling distances involves sitting for long hours which puts more pressure on our spine. Ensure you stay active by sitting less and moving more.  Carry back support while travelling if you are experiencing back pain.Call don’t text: If you have a huge family and friend’s WhatsApp group you are most likely going to be flooded with festive wishes in your inbox. Try to limit text usage to avoid pain in the neck (text neck). Pick up the phone and talk to a loved one instead. Walking and talking is yet another way to stay active and your loved ones will surely appreciate the effort!Bend carefully and avoid carrying heavy shopping bags: Festive chores like cleaning the house, making rangoli, shopping and packing gifts etc can involve frequent bending or carrying heavy loads. Bending from your back increases pressure on your spine. Practice bending from your knees and not your back. Simple changes such as lighting diyas in the window panes instead of on the floor could help minimise bending.Avoid tight clothes and heavy jewellery: Tight clothes can limit blood circulation to your spine. Heavy jewellery can put excess load on your neck. Opt for a minimalist look and wear comfortable clothes to avoid unnecessary aches and pains. Avoid heels: Pencil heels can put excess load on your spine. Heels are not recommended for people with spine problems. Avoid heels altogether or opt for wedges or platform heels as they provide more support to the spine compared to pencil heels.Pain symptoms are more common the older you get, and your risk is increased by lack of physical activity or by carrying extra weight. Your job may also put you at increased risk if you have to lift, push or pull while twisting your spine, or if you sit at a desk all day and do not maintain proper posture.Discomfort in the upper and mid back is commonly caused by overuse, muscle strain, injury, poor posture, or a herniated disc. Problems in the lower back can be caused by a variety of issues with any parts of the complex, interconnected network of spinal muscles, nerves, bones, discs, or tendons in the lumbar spine, spinal canal, or spinal cord.

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