I am often asked, "What can I do to get better quicker?" by patients as they begin care at our centre. Well today, I am going to share with you the Top 5 things that you can do today to help you either get out of pain, improve your recovery from injury, or pass on to a friend or family member: remember though, if in any doubt about your suitability (diabetics and those with severe osteoporosis or arthritis, if you are on high-dose steroids or are undergoing chemotherapy) then please contact your Chiropractor or GP for advice.
1. Ice or heat: A recent study has shown that there is a 2% difference between these two contrasting therapies in terms of their effectiveness at relieving pain. Using ice or hot packs (not gels, creams or sprays) for 15 minutes seems to work, whichever floats your boat.
2. Decrease your stress: There are 3 different types of stress: chemical, emotional and physical. We call them "The 3 Ts", toxins, thoughts and trauma. Most of these are not sudden, and sometimes not considered "big" things in your life, but it's worth working on decreasing them, through eating and drinking better (more water to start with), having some time to chill and movement...
3. Move: Walking, cycling and swimming (not breaststroke) are nearly always the best thing to do. A notable exception is if you have bad sciatica, in which case, rest and ice first before thinking about anything more than a gentle stroll round the house.
4. Use one pillow: all too often when patients fill in our health questionnaire, on the subject of sleep, they say that they use more than one orthopaedic, contoured pillow or sleep on their front. This won't help a bad back, let alone a bad neck!
5. Stay positive: More often than not you will be reading this blog having had months or even years of pain, so exercise patience and congratulate yourself that you will start the road to recovery as soon as you're done here by implementing the advice listed above: for the next step, call your local UCA chiropractor