New year, new you? Yes, even with Omicron you can still improve your health (and pain) from home!
Read on as we share 5 impactful ways to start reducing pain from home, right away.
With appointments canceled, gyms closed, and general uncertainty, committing to a “better you” may look a little bit different in 2022. But different doesn’t mean worse!
Luckily, treatment for pain from home has never been better or easier than it is today. We can beat pain without wait times, out of pocket spending, or referrals to specialists.
During this slower start to 2022, use your downtime to improve your health and reduce pain from home.
1. Talk to someone. Pain isn’t just physical.
Listen, the last year (or two) have been a lot. For many, stress and tension are at an all-time high. We’ve felt alone and unable to do what we love. Add health issues on top of everything else? It’s a lot to carry.
If you’re living with any type of muscle, joint or body pain, although the focus is often on the physical, your mental health plays a major role.
When it comes to pain, there is a chicken or egg scenario of, “which came first?”. Stress and depression create pain, and pain creates stress and depression.
Wait times to speak to professional behavioral therapists are at a record high. Fortunately, where you’re located is now less of a barrier to good care – with more appointments available through video or phone.
Search for registered therapists in your area here, and book a telehealth appointment.
Located in California? Become a PeerWell patient and talk to one of our registered therapists right away (no wait times). Book a call time now.
Listen to this guided audio, Breathing to Relax, from PeerWell’s daily pain program (you can download the app here). Notice your pain get better (even if only for a few moments):
2. Do virtual physical therapy (it’s got serious perks)!
Physical therapy over video is convenient, requires no travel time, no parking, and is without risk of getting canceled because of COVID restrictions.
We know it sounds too good to be true, but virtual physical therapy from the comfort of home gets more popular each year. Like Peleton’s virtual cycling classes, working out at home and even tracking progress is becoming the new norm. Physical therapy with licensed Doctors of Physical Therapy over video is no different.
Your physical therapist can diagnose you, watch your movement, and create exercise routines effectively without seeing you in person. PeerWell has a team of Doctors of Physical Therapy who exclusively treat patients remotely over video call. They are specially trained for virtual treatment.
Check out this remote back pain exercise with PeerWell physical therapist, Britni Keitz:
Ready to book a virtual physical therapy appointment? Located in California? We can schedule you in, today. Click here to book an intro call.
3. Motion is lotion. Get moving to beat pain.
On top of virtual sessions with a physical therapist, it’s important to do your own home exercise plan. When it comes to pain and general body health, “motion is lotion”. Walking, exercises, and keeping up with activities that push you (but don’t create more pain) are key.
Keeping busy—and getting some fresh air and vitamin D—is a great way to combat the lockdown or pandemic blues.
Set a daily goal of being active inside your home, or outside in your neighborhood. Start with 5, 10 or 20 minutes a day of moving your body and go up from there.
Tip: Mark down the days you’ve exercised on a calendar. Heck, set a doable step goal each day or even compete with friends, family or colleagues in a month-long walking challenge! Setting a goal, seeing progress, and having accountability matters more than we think.
Check out this video answering a FAQ, “what should I do if some exercises are painful?”.
4. Get daily support from your community and peers
You’re not alone in your pain. Ever. In saying this, we totally understand that with the pandemic, your routine disrupted, and ongoing pain, you may be feeling isolated.
Even though it’s a lonely time, you always have access to support networks. There are many outlets for you to get community support from experts and those who are also trying to overcome pain from home.
Here are a few great places for daily support:
- Join a Facebook support group for your pain type – Our community-run group, Hip & Knee Replacement Surgery Advice & Support Group has more than 7,500 members (and growing). This support group shares stories and helpful tips/ lessons about pain and joint replacement surgery. We invite you to join the conversation if you have hip or knee pain.
- Download the PeerWell App – Get daily guidance and recovery support for your hip replacement, knee replacement, shoulder pain, wrist pain or back pain. Each of PeerWell’s programs is tailored to your pain type and are proven to help you recover faster. All daily content and exercises are 100% designed to be done at home.
- Become a PeerWell patient and get access to top doctors, weekly physical therapy, and a daily program – PeerWell’s digital healthcare clinic offers all treatments via telehealth. You will be assigned a nurse, meet with doctors in the country, and get physical therapy without needing to leave the house.
5. Enjoy some guilt-free relaxation
When your whole life is at home, it can be hard to separate downtime from active time.
Be diligent about carving out time for yourself. It can feel wrong or guilt-inducing to take down time, but it’s actually incredibly beneficial—both mentally and physically.
Downtime should leave you feeling energized, rested and peaceful. A lot of the activities we think of as down time – like checking social media or watching episode after episode of Netflix – are actually active activities.
Whether it’s watching a movie, going for a walk by yourself, making it to your online exercise class, baking something or sitting down to work on a project, choose activities that leave you feeling positive and energized.
Tip: Lump together enjoyable and non-enjoyable activities. Make a “routine sandwich” by taking something you don’t love doing – like leaving the house for a 20 minute walk – and add something enjoyable before and after. Maybe you get to listen to a podcast or drink a cup of coffee after exercise, or eat a nice bunch of fresh grapes pre-workout. Make your routines consistent, fun and doable. Set a movement goal, and once you hit it, give yourself a guilt-free reward.
While a pandemic, cancelled appointments and disruptions to your healthcare aren’t what you wanted, we can find some silver linings. For one, hopefully you have a little more time to yourself.
Carve out time for yourself each day and focus on reducing your pain and getting healthier. When everything opens up again and life resumes, the better you will be waiting.
While 2022 may be off to a shaky start, we’re here to help you get the most out of the New Year. You can reduce your pain (and stress) from home and improve your overall health.
Located in California? We invite you to become a PeerWell patient and get back to better, today.