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Winter Safety

Family

Be safe out there and enjoy the snow!

It took some time, but the snow has finally arrived, and with it, comes the need for proper winter safety.

Our clinic sees a marked increase in the number of injuries after a snowfall. Slips and falls due to icy conditions are a major cause, but we also see plenty of patients who injure themselves while shoveling snow.

Today, we’re going to talk a bit about the things you can do to prevent yourself from getting hurt during the winter months.

  • Keeping the walkways clear around your home is critical for the safety of yourself and others. Forsake fashion for common sense, and wear snow boots with a good grip. Many people find themselves the victim of falls while walking the family dog – one strong pull can lead to an unexpected tumble. Consider a pair of pull-on ice grips for the bottoms of your boots to secure traction on slippery sidewalks. You may also want to try a harness or Halti for your dog to give you better control, and increase your chances of staying upright.
  • As for keeping those walkways and driveways clear, you’re going to have to shovel. Shoveling snow provides a rigorous cardiovascular workout, which while beneficial, can lead to many aches and pains afterward.
  • Always remember to warm up your muscles with some stretching before heading out. Gentle forward and back bends, twists, shoulder rolls and lunges will all help to prepare your body. Don’t forget to dress in layers – if you start to sweat, you can always remove some pieces, but you want your muscles to remain warm and pliable while you work.
  • Ergonomic shovels – the ones with the bend in the handle – can be helpful for shoveling. When lifting the snow, stand with both feet facing forward. Bend from your knees, and never from your back. Keep the shovel close to your body as you scoop the snow, and avoid twisting to dump in awkward or overly high position. Wet or excessive amounts of snow should always be tackled by more than one person – don’t overtax yourself. Shoveling can be very strenuous. Remember to take frequent breaks, and keep your body fueled with some complex carbohydrates for energy. A hot bowl of organic oatmeal with some fresh berries would be a great choice.
  • Once your work is done, come back inside and take a few moments to gently stretch out your muscles again. Some simple yoga can help with this, along with slow stretching of the quadriceps and calves. Now you can rest! You’ve earned it.

After all of this, remember to keep up with your chiropractic appointments during these winter months. Cold weather can be hard on the body. Your adjustments will maintain and improve your spinal health, ensuring that you’re able to keep going, no matter what the weather throws at you. Stay warm and see you soon!

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