- Dr Glenn Caley
How to keep HEALthy at home whilst on lock-down
This is a time that we have been asked to self-isolate, it is not a time to sit around on our bums and veg (Christmas has already come and gone)! Remember the body needs movement, the brain needs movement and therefore your body’s natural defence against disease needs you to move!
If you’re in pain or discomfort and are unable to come in for an adjustment, remember the goal is to then try and put as little damaging pressure on your body as possible. This is achieved by keeping your body and spine moving, and compromising the disc as little as possible. None of us are textbooks and of course each individual person may need advice catered specifically to them, HOWEVER, in this completely abnormal situation we find ourselves in, I think I may need to allow myself to give some generalised advice...for once.
If your lower back is uncomfortable, refrain from bending forward and rounding your back (such as touching your toes or picking something up off the floor). This movement often feels like it alleviates the discomfort and we think of it as a “stretch”, but you run the risk of irritating the back of that disc. Not worth it!
If you are going to relax and watch a movie or read your book, lay down rather than sitting on the couch. Prolonged sitting on a soft surface like a couch will round your lower back and put asymmetrical pressure onto those lower discs. Similarly, sitting with your head down playing on your cell phone or laptop all day puts a lot of tension on your neck and spinal cord.
In a nutshell:
Start an at-home exercise routine, and find fun ways to make sure you stick to it. Keep up exercises that engage your core without compromising your spine. Planking, walking lunges and standing on one leg are all great ways to keep your core fit with minimal risk.
Do not sit down for hours on end, especially on a soft surface like a sofa. Make sure to get up for short walks every 30-40 min.
Keep good posture and when using your cell phone try hold it up in front of your eyes to avoid the “chin-to-chest” strain that we are all getting these days.
This post could go on and on about eating well, drinking plenty of water, staying away from sugar, decreasing alcohol etc etc. The massage is - this is already a very emotionally and toxic stressful time period. So be kind to your body, give it the best possible opportunity to adapt and HEAL by decreasing stresses TO it, and by giving it movement and LIFE. Do things that make you happy, this is a wonderful opportunity for that!
Keep happy, keep HEALthy, and focus on those positive thoughts!