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Back Stories

Back pain at Halloween is no treat. Tricks to make it better.

As soon as October hits, the kids double-down on the Halloween talk, mulling what they want to be and asking to go costume shopping. And here you are trying to hide your fear at the thought of traipsing through the neighborhood on dimly-lit streets while dodging sugar-hyped children and the assorted costumed and leashed pet. Chronic back pain is, well, a pain, on a normal day. On Halloween, it can be downright excruciating. A little preparation can go a long way toward helping you make it through trick-or-treating with a smile on your face.

  • Prepare ahead of time

Since there could be some significant walking in your future, take precautions to ensure that you are comfortable. That means wearing supportive shoes, or buying a pair if need be. You also may want to take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory before you leave the house or bring it with you, along with a bottle of water to stay hydrated.

  • Think portable heat

A cordless heating pad or something like an air-activated, stick-on heat pack can provide temporary relief if your back pain is flaring up.

  • Beware of how you move

In all the excitement of trick-or-treating, what with the running into neighbors, and checking out the over-the-top Halloween décor, and helping your kids collect their candy, you may not pay close attention to all the twisting, turning, and bending you’re doing. But, you’ll definitely pay for it later. Remembering to limit any movements that tend to trigger your back pain can help you from feeling the after-effects of a long night on your feet.

  • Bring a flashlight

You’ll probably be approaching a lot of dark houses, unaware of where steps could be, or having to step on the grass or into the street to avoid excited kids. That means lots of trip hazards are in your future, which could mean exacerbating your existing back pain and maybe even adding another fun injury to the equation. Bringing a flashlight will allow you to illuminate the ground and keep yourself safe.

  • Limit your candy intake

No one’s saying you shouldn’t pocket all the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups when your kids aren’t looking. (We all do that, right?) But, while Halloween can be permission-giving when it comes to indulging on sweets, eating that kind of food on a regular basis can be dangerous to your overall health and create additional stress on your back if it impacts your weight.

“Keep your weight under control for back pain prevention,” said Everyday Health. “You’re more likely to suffer from low back pain if you are overweight or obese, or quickly gain a significant amount of weight, according to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS). “Being overweight, especially in the mid-section, shifts your entire center of gravity forward and puts additional strain on your back muscles.”

  • Watch what you wear

If you were planning to get into costume yourself, there are several items that could impair your vision or impede your path as you walk. Choosing glasses or hats that can get in your face, masks that can make it harder to see, or capes, long dresses, or pants that hang below your shoes can all be trip hazards.

  • Beware of the heavy candy bag

Trick-or-treating is a competition to see who gets the most candy, is it not? And, it never fails that your child fills their bag so full of candy bars and bags of sugary goodness that it’s no longer comfortable for them to carry the candy, which means: mom or dad to the rescue. If you have back problems, carrying a heavy bag is not the greatest idea.

If you’re tired of having to deal with chronic back pain, which can mean cutting fun outings short, making uncomfortable allowances for discomfort that’s disrupting your life, and always having to prepare in case that pain gets unbearable, contact DISC Spine Institute, leading DFW disc and spine centers and experts in minimally invasive treatments, the most effective medical procedures to treat and eliminate chronic back pain. Treating back pain is easier than ever, with minimally invasive treatments that mean short hospital stays, and shorter recoveries.

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Great tips! This would be really helpful to me as I suffer from chronic back pain. I should take note of this as Halloween is still eight months away.

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