Question: What is the difference between 50 degrees in the fall and 50 degrees in the spring?
Answer: In the spring 50 degrees feels warm!
This last weekend was the first “nice” weekend of spring! When I went out to get the morning paper the birds were singing and overnight flowers had bloomed in my garden, including crocus, bluets and periwinkle. After breakfast I went for my first mountain bike ride of the season. There were many other bikers and trail runners out. I rode by a baseball game- must have been opening day! As I passed a playground it was full of parents with little kids playing on the swings and slides. Heading home the landscapers were doing spring clean-ups and spreading mulch.
I love this time of year! For many after a sedentary winter the weather gets warmer and we into activity. Spring sports are starting for our youth athletes, we itch to get our gardens back in shape, we tune up our bikes and spring into action.
Many of us spring into action too fast and furiously and pay the price in pain. Monday mornings after weekends like this our phone rings off the hook with people who hurt themselves. We get the traumatic injuries, but more commonly it is caused by overuse. “Spring cleaning” the garden, playing catch with our kids for hours, running a little more than their bodies are ready for, or hitting the gym too hard trying to get into bathing suite shape. Whatever the cause of that flair-up, it is almost always caused by doing too much too fast. One of the 1st questions I ask in a treatment room is, “did you stretch first”? The answer is universally no.
I hope you are not one of those Monday morning phone calls looking for emergency pain relief. If you are know that we are here and ready to help you. We have a long stretch of nice weather heading our way leading into summer which I want you to enjoy. No one want to be sidelined from an injury that you could have prevented.
Please remember to pace yourself. Stretch before and after activity. If you get injured, before calling the office start with home care. This leads to the age old debate of whether to ice or heat. I’m a big fan of ice. You can’t have pain without inflammation and ice is the best, safest and most localized anti-inflammatory. The only time I recommend heat is if you wake up the next morning and you feel sore like you haven’t used muscles in a while. If there is pain at a joint or along your spine then ice is probably the best therapy. The best way to ice in the first 24 hours after injury is 15 minutes on, wait 15 minutes then repeat. After 24 hours you should ice for 20 minutes than wait an hour before repeating. Whether you ice or heat it should be moist otherwise you can freeze or burn the skin. I like to dampen a paper towel then squeeze all the water out. This is damp enough for the ice or heat to penetrate, but doesn’t make a wet mess.
Spring is also a great time to do a spring tune-up to your spine. Your spine is made up of 24 vertebrae and has over 120 joints. It is the chassis for your torso and also houses and protects your spinal cord. My job as a chiropractor is to make sure these joints are moving correctly and to make sure the muscles that move the spine and support your posture are balanced and functioning properly. At Performance Health Center we take care of your spine and all the joints of your body. Before you spring into spring activities, now is a great time for a body tune-up.
To see if your body is ready for the spring, or to get that spinal-tune-up that maybe overdue, please call the office at 508-655-9008. If you have any questions please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org