The holiday season can be full of joy, laughter, and cheer! However, those suffering from chronic pain may experience an escalation of their chronic pain symptoms. Managing pain during the holidays can be physically and mentally demanding with parties to attend, gifts to wrap, and memories to make. Holidays often bring extra stress, anxiety, and pressure for individuals diagnosed with chronic pain because of an excess of travel, shopping, preparation for family gatherings, etc.  Southern Coast Pain Specialists can help you enjoy your holiday with low pain and high spirits. Here are some tips to remain mindful of chronic pain during the holiday season and beyond.

  • When Driving to Your Holiday Destination:
    • Take regular breaks to stretch and move around.
    • Drink plenty of water and snack on healthy foods
    • Wear warm clothing and bring blankets…cold weather can bring pain to joints.
  • When Flying to Your Holiday Destination:
    • Check with your doctor to make sure it is safe to fly with an injury, chronic pain, or if you are recovering from a surgical procedure.
    • Try to avoid drastic amounts of walking through the airport.
    • Try traveling with rolling suitcases versus lifting heavy bags.
    • Pack travel essentials, including therapeutic pillows.
    • Stay hydrated! Circulated air on a plane can make you feel dehydrated.
    • Try to move around the cabin when able.
  • When You’ve Arrived at Your Holiday Destination:
    • Continue with your Doctor’s plan for pain management.
    • Continue taking medication.
    • Continue stretching.
    • Limit yourself in physical activity-no lifting heavy presents or grocery bags!
    • Avoid prolonged resting periods.
    • Be sure to get enough rest!
    • Continue healthy eating habits.
    • Ask for help when needed!

It is extremely important for individuals with chronic pain to maintain a routine and incorporate these healthy pain management tips during the holiday season. Stretching increases joint and muscle elasticity. Stiffness of muscles and joints are one of the main causes of strains and tears. Remaining hydrated increases lubrication of the joints and can help in fighting inflammation. Inflammation being one of the most common causes of chronic pain.

Avoiding extended periods of resting by practicing light exercises keeps the painful joints limber and decrease inflammation. Limiting the amount of weight being lifted prevents further injury or sudden increase in pain. Know your physical limitations and set boundaries for yourself by asking for help with lifting and moving heavy items.

Continuing with your Doctor’s pain management treatment plan and continuing medications will decrease your chances of pain worsening during the celebration. Making it much easier to maintain pain relief once the holidays are over.

Getting enough rest and utilizing therapeutic pillows relaxes the muscles and mind. Although, it may seem unrelated, rest and comfort during rest play a large role in pain management. Without rest and comfortable rest, an individual’s pain may become even more difficult to manage due to irritability.

Lastly, maintaining a healthy diet is important because extra weight can increase your chances of experiencing pain. Although, holiday season makes it extremely difficult to maintain a healthy diet, try to balance your meals and treat yourself only occasionally. Increasing your weight and not being attentive to your healthy diet works against all other pain management techniques you are using.

Remain mindful of healthy pain management tips during the holiday season and be sure to notate any changes in pain condition.  If you notice any changes or an increase in pain, be sure to consult with Southern Coast Pain Specialists. Because, along with healthy pain management tips, oral medication therapy, and massage therapy, we offer over twenty non-surgical, in-office, procedures to treat back pain, neck pain, knee pain, hip pain, and shoulder pain, etc.

Procedures for Chronic Pain not limited to:

  • Epidural Steroid Injections
  • Genicular Nerve Block and Ablation
  • Non-Steroid Knee, Hip, and Shoulder Injections
  • Facet Joint Injections
  • Rhizotomy
  • Sacroiliac Joint Injections
  • Trigger Point Injections

 “I came here, and the RF Ablation was offered. I am happy on a level that I can’t even explain. I don’t even remember the last holiday I had with my family that I wasn’t in pain or uncomfortable just giving and receiving hugs. Now I don’t have to worry about my family hugging me tight because of my chronic back pain. I haven’t felt this comfortable in years!”

  1. Balassi

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