Healthy New Years Resolutions/Growing Pains

Five Healthy New Year’s Resolutions

Need some inspiration for a worthwhile New Year’s Resolution that you might actually keep? Here are a few recommended resolutions that will act as investments in both your short and long term health.

1. Sit Less:

New studies showing just how bad sitting is for your health are starting to really convince us that a lifestyle change is in order. Limit your sitting to four hours a day, set an alarm to remind you to get up every hour or invest in a standing work station. Any way you can find to do it, this is one great investment in your long term health.

2. Find a physical activity that you actually like:

Too many of us fail to stick to an exercise program because we don’t choose the right activity. The gym isn’t your only option. This year, try to find an activity that you really enjoy. It can be anything from laser tag, to dancing, to rock climbing. It doesn’t matter what the activity is as long as it gets you moving.

3. Drink more water:

Are you getting your recommended eight cups a day?

If not, this is an easy resolution to keep that can make a surprising difference to your overall wellbeing. Staying hydrated has been shown to help with concentration, fatigue and even reducing pain.

4. Get that niggling pain or stiffness treated:

Perhaps you might feel a bit self indulgent if you visit a therapist for a problem that really hasn’t been bothering you much. However, most chronic health problems start out as something small. They are also much easier to treat in the early stages . Invest in your body now and treat niggles or stiffness before it does get in the way of your day to day activity levels.

5. Learn how to strengthen your pelvic floor correctly:

Pelvic floor weakness is a common problem that affects both men and women, often resulting in incontinence and pain. The good news is that most pelvic floor disorders can be treated with specific exercises. Unfortunately, many people actually do these exercises the wrong way, making the problem worse. Speak to your therapist to find out how they can help ensure you have correct technique.

Growing Pains

ARE GROWING PAINS A REAL THING?

The short answer is that yes, growing pains are real and usually a harmless part of childhood. Though poorly understood, they are recognized as a common phenomenon occurring most often between the ages of 3 and 12. The pain is commonly felt in both legs, particularly at night with no clear cause of pain. As yet no one is able to explain why they happen but growing pains are thought to be a normal response of a growing body as it adapts to new heights, sizes, strengths and skills.

SO I DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT MY CHILD’S PAIN?

Not so fast. While growing pains are harmless and usually transient, there are many childhood illnesses and conditions that do require professional assessment and, if left untreated, can cause serious harm. These include but are not limited to;

Juvenile arthritis

Childhood cancers (which often first present as knee or jaw pain)

Developmental hip dysplasia (abnormality of the hip joint)

Perthes disease

and a variety of other musculoskeletal disorders.

While it’s true that children are generally more resilient and heal well, they are also vulnerable to injuries just like adults. All serious strains and sprains should be rehabilitated correctly to ensure no long-term problems occur down the track. Many childhood pains can be relieved with therapy in the short term, even if the child will eventually grow out of the pain in the longer term.

HOW CAN I TELL IF MY CHILD’S PAIN IS CAUSED MY SOMETHING MORE SERIOUS?

Unfortunately, unless you are a trained professional you won’t be able to tell. If there is any doubt in your mind, always contact a therapist or doctor. Many clinicians have great respect for a parent’s intuition and acknowledge that parents are usually very good at knowing if something is wrong with their child.

Even if you feel sure nothing is wrong, there are a few signs and symptoms that you should take particular notice of.

Pain that is severe, pain that occurs suddenly without obvious cause, pain that is one sided, pain that affects your child’s activity levels, causes a limp or is associated with signs of general illness/fever, or persisting night pain.

Constant, severe and unrelenting pain is a serious sign that should be investigated at any age.

WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I’M WORRIED?

The first step is to consult a therapist or general practitioner. They can help to either reassure you that your child’s pains are harmless, or recommend further investigation and treatment.

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