Spring is here and for most of us that means that our weekends are filled with spring cleaning, gardening and basic around the home maintenance, repairing some of the wear and tear that the winter months inevitably cause.
The problem with all of this is is that all this physical activity, much of which involves lots of lifting, carrying, bending and twisting, can take a real toll on your back, especially if you really haven’t been that active this past winter. To help you avoid a painful start to the summer here are five tips for keeping your back injury free while you are tackling all those spring time chores on your to do list.
1. Take a Few Minutes to Stretch
Any period of physical activity – and housecleaning and gardening are certainly physical activities – should begin with a simple stretching session, as doing so allows your muscles and tissues to ease into an active state. Begin with your head and neck and work your way all the way down to your toes. If you skip this simple step you really will be putting your back at greater risk of injury, so it really will be time well spent, even if you are very eager to just get on when the tasks at hand.
2. Watch Your Form
Whether you are lifting and carrying heavy boxes to the garage to store, sacks of soil across the back yard or hauling the patio furniture up from the basement it’s crucial that you practice the proper lifting techniques at all times. When lifting bend at your knees, not at the waist and enlist help when carrying heavier objects. Even a simple odd twist of the back when lifting and carrying can cause a back injury, so stay aware and be careful always.
3. Remember, Rome Wasn’t Built in a Day
Yes, you are looking forward to having all those spring bulbs planted, all of that clutter out of the kids’ rooms and the outdoor furniture back in place ready for all those lovely warm evenings outside. But you don’t have to do everything at once. Break up tasks over the course of a few days or even weeks, so that you’re not overworking your spine.
4. Work as a Part of a Team
Not only will enlisting the help of others get everything finished more quickly but you can all watch each other’s backs, almost literally. Aside from the help with heavy lifting having a spring cleaning companion (or two, or three) will make going up and down ladders a lot safer as you’ll have spotters to help prevent slips and falls that can cause serious injury.
5. Know When Enough is Enough
It’s not that unusual to notice some general discomfort in your back if you have been putting in some physical effort for a while, but if the pain increases it’s imperative that you stop what you’re doing and take a break.
If the pain continues, but you think you just have a back strain or sprain, care for the injury with rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medications. If pain doesn’t decrease over the next few days, consider heading to the chiropractor for a check-up to get to the root of the problem.
We are taking new patients and offering free consultations, and that way we find out if you are someone we can help before going any further. Call us today for a free consultation at (913)-953-5959 or CLICK HERE for more information about our Overland Park chiropractic office.