The holidays can be action packed. With holiday celebrations and so many fun winter activities to take part in, you definitely don’t want your aching joints to get in the way of your holiday spirit. While joint pain is a common problem during the holiday season because of the colder weather and stressful schedules, being mindful of your actions and joint health can help you keep your holiday cheer.
Here are a few ways you can manage your Osteoarthritis symptoms during the busy holiday season:
Holiday preparations may have you feeling like a turkey running around with no head, but a busy schedule should not keep you from your regular exercise. One of the best ways to help your Osteoarthritis pain is to practice low impact exercises regularly. Even just a couple of minutes of stretching or yoga can help boost your joint function.
Again, the holidays can feel so full that they become more stressful than joyful. If you’re struggling with Osteoarthritis pain, this stress can exacerbate your symptoms and negatively impact your mental health. Practicing meditation or relaxing techniques can help to de-stress your body and may help to alleviate some of the holiday stress and joint pain. At the same time, your body may be telling you to rest in spite of your packed schedule. Listen to it! Try not to overdo physical activities or holiday errands and make sure you get enough sleep. Poor sleep can make managing your pain even more difficult. Taking this time for yourself can be as simple as journaling everyday, getting to bed on time, or going for a walk outside!
Traditions are often at the core of our holiday experiences. They’re part of what keep the holiday spirit alive! However, if you find that a certain holiday tradition is negatively impacting your Osteoarthritis symptoms, it’s important that you don’t just push through the pain. Find ways to adapt your traditions so that they better suit your needs. If you’re finding cooking the dinner too much, try delegating dishes; instead of baking your own gingerbread houses, consider buying a kit from the store! Talk to your family and work together to make new traditions and memories - after all, being together on the holidays is what makes the traditions so meaningful!
Don’t be afraid to carve out some time for yourself to exercise, rest, or prioritize your needs this holiday; taking care of your health will help you and your loved ones keep holiday spirits high and Osteoarthritis pain more manageable.
Looking for more information on how to manage your Osteoarthritis symptoms this Winter? Helping my Arthritis offers current education and treatment options around first and second-line physiotherapy for hip and knee osteoarthritis patients around Surrey, Delta, and Vancouver BC. With the recent growth in telehealth options, we are able to now offer osteoarthritis management programs to patients living anywhere in BC! Follow us on instagram for weekly arthritis tips or inspiration or reach out today to learn more about how to help your arthritis! Call 604 306 0127 or email to consult with Nadine, the physiotherapist behind Helping My Arthritis.