A LIST OF DONT'S
A patient recently told me that I always say, “don’t do this, don’t do that.” Sounds like something my kids would say. He went on to suggest I write an article on all the don’ts! So here are some of the don’ts.
1. Don’t sleep on you stomach, it puts your neck in a terrible position by maximally compressing one side of the spine. If you sleep on your side try to keep you neck in neutral by filling in the space between your ear and shoulder.
2. Don’t sleep on an old, soft mattress. When the mattress starts to feel like you’re sleeping in a spoon it’s time to go shopping. Eight hours sleeping in a bad posture is a sure way to aggravate the spine.
3. Don’t sit straight up in bed in the morning. It’s best to roll onto your side and then sit up, better biomechanics.
4. Don’t slouch when you’re standing or sitting. Try to have a good posture by keeping your ear lobe in line with both your shoulder and hip when looking from the side.
5. Don’t shovel snow by lifting, twisting, and throwing. Instead pick up the snow, walk to the snow bank, and dump. Better still, try the scoop shovel. Speaking from experience, it is a lot less strain in the back.
6. When lifting, don’t bend from the waist, bend your knees.
7. When getting in and out of the car put the seat all they way back so you don’t have to twist as much.
8. Don’t reach into the back seat of the car from the front seat. It may strain your shoulder, specifically the rotator cuff muscles.
9. Don’t constantly move your office chair or any chair on wheels with your feet. I once had a patient aggravate her knee this way.
10. Don’t sit with your leg tucked up under you. It places a lot of strain on the bent knee. As well, don’t sit with your legs crossed, as it is bad for circulation.
11. While they look great ladies, don’t wear high heels for prolonged periods. They tighten the calf muscles, throw your body weight forward forcing one to arch the lower back, and often contribute to bunions.
12. Finally, don’t forget to smile and laugh. It’s good for your health and makes life fun. Indeed, laughter has been shown to improve the immune system and release endorphins which can reduce pain.
Written by Susan Reive, Owner of Kilborn Physiotherapy Clinic