Back pain, neck pain, and headaches are among the most common pain conditions that many Canadians suffer every day. You can reduce pain and prevent it with massage therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic treatments and physiotherapy.
But in many cases, one of the best ways to manage and reduce pain is by making small adjustments in your daily routine.
1. Improve Your Posture
No, you don’t have to practice balancing a book on your head while walking around – unless that works for you! But many pain conditions, including in the back, neck, shoulders, and even headaches, can be better managed by using better posture when you are standing and sitting.
A good posture helps to strengthen your core muscles to support your spine and reduce the physical stresses that can cause the pain.
2. A Good Night’s Sleep
Your body doesn’t just rest when you sleep. It uses the downtime of sleeping to rejuvenate and repair stressed and sore muscles and joints. When you don’t get enough sleep, even for a single night, it can worsen pain conditions in two ways.
First, when you are tired the next day, you’re more likely to slouch and not practice good posture. Second, your body doesn’t get enough time to deal with the pain you were already experiencing.
3. Stay Active
If you find it a little difficult to get up off the couch after binging on Netflix, it’s an example of what happens to your body when you don’t move. Staying active by getting up regularly from your desk at work or couch at home can keep your muscles and joints in better shape.
To take it to another level, you can increase your muscle strength and flexibility, both of which can help reduce pain, through a pain-reduction exercise program.
Yes, it is easier said than done. But stress and pain feed off of each other. A stressful day can tense your muscles, causing more pain, and the pain from your tense muscles can make you more stressed.
You can break the cycle by trying to manage your stress with relaxation techniques including deep breathing, yoga, and meditation.
There’s no one way to ensure you live pain-free. But by taking whatever steps you can to manage and reduce pain, you can feel less pain and reduce its effect on your life.