5 Self Care Tips for Back Pain
As life begins to pick back up again, I just wanted to take a moment to remind you to check in with yourself and make sure your body is getting what it needs…
One of the most common complaints I hear as a massage therapist are aching backs and shoulders. Of course massage is a great way to relieve tension. In between sessions, here are some things you can be doing at home to help keep tightness at bay.
- Hot Baths: preferably with Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate). The heat combined with magnesium, which is absorbed through your skin, is a perfect combination for sore muscles. Enjoy some relaxing time winding down with a good book <instead of scrolling through your phone> for extra relief.
- Self massage: This can be done with foam rollers or lacrosse balls, rolling on the floor or against a wall if you would rather be vertical.
- Quality Sleep: make sure you have a good pillow that is not contributing to neck pain, no screen time within an hour of bedtime <maybe replace Tiktok with a board game and an herbal tea>, and keeping to a routine, such as the same bedtime every night, will help ensure a good night’s sleep.
- Move! Take breaks when your body tells you to! Get up and stretch, go for an evening walk, try 15 minutes of morning yoga to wake up, have a quick dance party while you’re making lunch <bonus points if you sing along!> Our bodies are designed for near constant movement, so make sure you are taking breaks from sitting when you need to.
- Nutrition and Hydration: It is recommended to shoot for half your body weight in ounces of water each day. For instance, if you weigh 120 pounds, you should try to get 60 oz of water per day. Not getting enough water can actually increase pain sensitivity, in case you needed another reason to stay hydrated. Additionally, try to stay away from processed foods when possible, which can increase inflammation. Stick to whole foods, or as a general guideline, “shop the perimeter of the grocery store instead of the aisles.”
These are all great ways to help you care for your body in between visits to your friendly neighborhood massage therapist. We are here to help you keep your body in good shape and can offer suggestions for home care. And don’t forget to make your next appointment!
This was a contribution from Vanessa.