3 Tips for Self-Care
The job of an osteopath is an interesting one. Each day is filled with various presentations of people’s pain and injuries. Part of our job is to provide treatment in order to decrease pain and optimise the function of a patient’s body.
Another part of our job is to educate and to provide strategies to resolve and prevent pain from occurring in the first place.
Today we are going to discuss 3 easy tips for self care that will help to keep you happy, healthy and functional.
1. Buy a foam roller (and use it)
A common question I ask patients is whether they own a foam roller, and if the answer is affirmative then the second question is whether they use it.
Think of a foam roller as your personal home therapist. Simply foam rolling for 2-3 minutes at the end of the day (mainly the thoracic spine) will leave you feeling lighter and with less pain.
By foam rolling you will be decreasing muscle tension and increasing blood flow – which in turn promotes increased oxygenation of tissues and decreased waste products.
2. Take a Magnesium Supplement
Everyone knows that a healthy diet can improve and maintain general health. Unfortunately the modern diet often does not supply the minerals and vitamins that our body and brains require to function optimally.
One very important mineral is magnesium. Magnesium is involved in many enzymatic processes including energy production and DNA repair. Optimal magnesium levels can contribute to decreased muscle tension via ion transport and allowing calcium and potassium to enter muscle cells.
Magnesium is the central element of chlorophyll and is found in dark leafy greens. As such you can optimise your magnesium levels by eating more dark leafy greens such as kale and spinach, preferably in the raw form.
If your consumption of raw dark leafy greens is limited then we recommend a magnesium supplement from a reputable brand. The best bioavailability comes from magnesium glycinate, magnesium citrate, and magnesium lactate.
And just remember – your ability to conserve magnesium that you have absorbed is also affected by alcohol consumption – alcohol increases the excretion rate of magnesium.
3. Develop a Regular Mobility Practice
Due to modern sedentary lifestyle practices (eg. sitting on the couch, in the car, at work) and modern stresses (eg. constant stimulation, always switched on or connected) our bodies are constantly accumulating tension. One of the causes of osteoarthritis is decreased range of motion in a joint – this occurs when we don’t use our joints to their full range or potential. Joints under increased tension are also more prone to injury.
You don’t have to necessarily start yoga 3 times a week. Simply having a simple 10 minute daily mobility practice can provide stress release and leave you feeling lighter and more relaxed. Now that you know all this don’t put it off any longer, start today.
If you don’t have a foam roller already or a good magnesium supplement we stock both of these at the clinic. We will also give you a set of exercises during your osteopathic consultations that are tailored to relieve the restrictions you are experiencing. These will improve your range of motion and mobility and get you feeling good.
If you feel that Osteopathy may help you, call Optimum Wellbeing on 07 5530 7921 to find out more.
For more information read here Come and see us at Optimum Wellbeing, Worongary, Gold Coast, Osteopathy, Naturopathy and Massage