It’s Snow Joke…a precautionary tale

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Phones ring off the hook during this time of year at our office from snow shoveling injuries, and slip and falls. There is an increased amount of people with bulging and herniated discs, and spinal subluxations. Falls can cause injury to the shoulder, wrist, hip, knee, neck and back.

Don’t Be a Snow hero!

If you have spinal or heart issues…Be Smart!

Pay someone to shovel.

Get checked out by our office or a corrective subluxation based Doctor of Chiropractic to get your body running at it’s best for clearance to shovel. If you have heart disease consult with your medical doctor.

Tip: Did you know that caffeine or nicotine 1 hour before or after shoveling raises your heart rate and blood pressure?

Don’t jump out of bed and go out and shovel!

Feed and Hydrate your Body

30 minutes -1 hour before shoveling feed your body.

  • Eggs or protein rich foods
  • fruit with Greek yogurt and nuts
  • trail mix
  • avocados with salsa
  • smoothies or shakes (of course organic and non GMO)

You’ll be burning lots of calories and need energy!

Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate

Dehydration doesn’t only happen in summer so make sure to drink plenty of water before and during snow shoveling.

Dress in layers of clothing for your body

  • Light weight water repellent clothing for ventilation and insulation.
  • Gloves or mittens to keep hands warm and dry.
  • Cover your head and neck as approximately 50% of your body heat will be lost through these areas.
  • Keep your feet warm- wear thick socks and wear slip resistant high traction boots.

Warm up your body and muscles

  • neck exercises- rotate chin to shoulder both sides , ear to shoulder both sides 10x’s, chin to chest and chin to sky 10x’s
  • arm circle exercises to warm up shoulder- arms out to side forming a ‘T’ and circle 10x’s each direction
  • hamstring toe touches 10x’s (if you can’t do that then you MUST come and visit our office for help)
  • march in place for 30 seconds
  • hip flexor stretches / wall squats (which you can find at www.drsahoury.com)

Shoveling Tips

  • An ergonomic shovel is a must as it conserves energy, and lightens the load on your spine.
  • Spray shovel with a non stick spray which will not allow snow to stick and will lighten the load on spine.
  • Scissor stance and push with legs.
  • Don’t lift. If you must lift, squat with legs apart, knees bent and back straight. Do not bend at waist.
  • Pick up the snow in small layers especially with the heavy wet snow.
  • No twisting motion or throwing snow over shoulders as these cause spinal stress.
  • Take Breaks every 15 minutes for a 5 minutes and re-hydrate and stretch your muscles.
  • Don’t overexert yourself.
  • Make sure you can see- do not let a hat or scarf block your vision while shoveling or snowblowing.
  • Be aware of your surroundings- icy patches or a fellow ‘snow man’.
  • Start early- A recommendation is that you go out multiple times. Clear the snow early and often instead of waiting for all the snow to fall and then go out and shovel. This will prevent injuries.
  • All information applies to snowblower owners also! Take one step at a time and remember let the machine do the work.

If at any point of time you are feeling

  • heart rate increase
  • shortness of breath
  • tight chest
  • lightheaded or dizzy

Call 911!!!

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If you have twinges, tightness or spasms in your back or you slip and fall you can call the office at Above and Beyond Holistic Wellness at 201-265-0555 and mention Channel 12 News and we will give you a complimentary spinal check up!

Our approach is holistic and we offer a wide variety of treatment options for you.

To your health and wellness,
Dr. Roger Sahoury.

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