Yes you've guessed it... back pain! For a wide variety of reasons. Here's how I would broadly categorise the people we see after Christmas with back pain:
1. The exhausted! The person who has been in 5th gear for most of December running around getting organised, and by the end of it is just shattered and run down - cue back or neck pain- stress and fatigue are massive triggers for these.
2. The couch potato! The person who sits on the couch for 2 weeks. The body needs exercise to keep everything in good nick - use it or lose it!
3. The party animal! Late nights, and plenty of them or combined with lack of sleep again can trigger this bad elf.
4. The Seasonal Warriors! People generally have more time on their hands, and can use the opportunity to be a bit overzealous with activities - cleaning, exercising, DIY!
Remember if your body isn't used to doing something and you're suddenly doing an awful lot of it, things can start to hurt....listen to your body, and pace yourself on any activity, taking breaks and choosing a variety of tasks so you are not doing the same thing over and over again.
So here's 3 simple tips to prevent your Christmas being visited by back pain:
1. Get enough sleep - getting less then 8 hours almost DOUBLES your risk of getting back pain. So prioritise it!
2. Stay active - yes, do rest, lounge, enjoy yourself. But throw in a few walks, hikes, cycles runs or swims to keep everything ticking over nicely. You'll feel better about yourself in January too!
3. Stay well hydrated - easy to forget about when there are so many other nice things to eat and drink, but don't forget water! We are more likely to get injured when dehydrated, plus you'll feel better the next morning!
Usually its not the box that you lifted that did it, thats usually just the straw that broke the camel's back - so look after the camel's back i.e. YOU!
Wishing you all a Happy and Healthy Christmas and New Year!