Recovering from an injury can be a long process. But what if you can’t afford to spend months off work? What if you have a sports event coming up that you’ve been working hard towards?
Whilst you need to give your body time to heal, you can speed up the healing process by choosing the right activities and using certain supplements. This isn’t to say that you can heal a broken leg in a couple weeks – no amount of lifestyle changes can make that happen. However, you can prevent yourself from unnecessarily prolonging the recovery time as many people do.
Here are just several tricks to recover faster.
Listen to your doctor
Your doctor will probably recommend abstaining from certain activities whilst recovering. This could include driving, heavy lifting or running. Make sure that you follow this advice, as frustrating as it may be. Failing to do so could aggravate the injury and add weeks onto your recovery time. Get other people to drive you to places and lift objects for you and take a break from sports.
Invest in other professional help
On top of getting medical help from a doctor, you may want to see a physical therapist who can recommend stretches and exercises to help your recovery. In the case of a sports injury, you may also be able to get a sports massage which could relax muscles and alleviate inflammation.
There could be other types of holistic therapy that may help. Acupuncture for example can be a great form of pain relief that can help some people in their recovery. You could also try hydrotherapy that could involve using the buoyancy of water to regain mobility after serious injuries.
You may be able to fund these types of recovery with a personal injury claim if your injury wasn’t your fault, you can contact us here for more information. You may also be able to apply to certain benefits or look into charity funding.
Use hot and cold treatments
A mixture of hot and cold treatment can alleviate inflammation and speed up recovery. Straight after an injury it’s recommended that you use cold treatments to prevent swelling. This could include applying an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables to the injured area. You only need to do this for fifteen minutes at a time every few hours.
After a couple days when the initial healing is done, you should then start using hot treatments to prevent inflammation during the long-term healing process. Placing a hot towel on the injured area could help to relax muscles and joints and prevent stiffness. If approved by your doctor, you could also take a hot bath. The heat and buoyancy of the water won’t just help fight inflammation, it will also fight pain by stimulating nerve endings and flooding the body with endorphins.
Choose the right exercise
Lying in bed all day isn’t always the best form of recovery. Small amounts of physical activity can often help people recover by preventing muscles and joints from seizing up. You’re often best to stick to low-impact exercise such as swimming, walking and yoga. Always listen to your body – if something is painful, don’t do it. In many cases, doing activities more slowly can alleviate pain and prevent damage.
Consume the right foods
Certain foods can also help with healing, whilst other foods may inhibit it.
Ginger and turmeric are two of the best healing foods. Both contain anti-inflammatory properties that can reduce swelling and relieve pain. You can consume these as a tea or incorporate them into foods such as stir fries. On top of these foods, try to increase your intake of omega-3. This nutrient has similar anti-inflammatory properties and is found in many fish and nuts.
When limiting foods, you may want to cut down on sugar. Lots of sugar will spike your insulin levels and increase inflammation. Alcohol should also be reduced. Whilst many people self-medicate with it, it’s been proven that alcohol can inhibit healing by negatively affecting the nervous system.
Get enough sleep
Finally, you should try to ensure that you’re getting a good amount of sleep each night. It’s when we’re asleep that our body does most of its healing. If you’re not sleeping enough, you can’t expect to heal.
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