Slips and falls can happen anywhere at any time – not just in icy conditions. While falls are common among seniors, they’re also common in the workplace. The construction industry has one of the highest rates of injuries, and falls are the most common cause. In Texas alone, one in in five workers reported job injuries in the construction industry.
If you’ve suffered a fall, use these six tips to help speed up your recovery.
1. Work on Stress Management
Stress can delay recovery because cortisol, the stress hormone, suppresses inflammatory pathways and the immune system.
Make it a point to de-stress and relax. That may be easier said than done – especially if you have a hectic work schedule or a family – but call on friends and family to help.
Here are some things you can do to de-stress:
- Take a warm bath with Epsom salts
- Read a book
- Take a nap
The less stress you have, the faster you will recover and get back your daily routine. It’s essential that you give yourself time to relax and heal above all else. This may mean taking days or weeks off of work, too.
2. Get Plenty of Rest
Rest and relaxation will give the body a chance to heal. Along with stress management, make sure that you’re getting enough sleep. The body does most of its repairing while we sleep. The earlier you get to bed, the better.
While you sleep, the brain triggers the release of a hormone that promotes tissue growth. The body also makes more white blood cells while you sleep. These white blood cells attack bacteria and viruses.
One study found that people who slept eight hours or more were less likely to come down with a cold than those who slept less than seven hours.
3. Book a Massage or Acupuncture
Falls can cause aches, pains and tension that can leave you feeling uncomfortable. Booking a massage can help ease tension and pain while promoting relaxation.
Massage also helps boost circulation, which promotes healing. Better circulation allows the body to deliver more nutrients and oxygen to the organs and muscles.
Acupuncture can also help remove energy blockages that may be slowing down the healing process.
4. Use Natural Remedies and Calming Herbs
Along with any medication or treatments your doctor prescribes, you may consider using natural remedies and calming herbs to supplement your recovery (talk to your doctor before taking any herbs).
Calming herbs, like valerian, chamomile and hops, help settle the nervous system. By promoting muscle relaxation and allowing the body to rest, you’ll speed up your recovery. Arnica lotion is another great option for easing pain and aiding in healing.
5. Physical Therapy
Depending on the severity of the injury, physical therapy may be required to help you recover and return to a normal life.
Physical therapy can not only help you regain strength, but also help you manage pain. Exercise and stretching will help keep the joints moving and improve function.
Recovering from a fall can be a long and complicated road. But following your doctor’s recommendations and these five tips will help speed up your recovery and help you get back to your daily routine.
6. Start Walking As Soon As Possible
Falls often make people fearful of walking. When you slip and fall, it’s not uncommon to relive the event in your mind and even be afraid of approaching a similar situation. It’s recommended that you try and tackle these fears as soon as possible.
When you’re able to walk safely without fear of injuring yourself or causing your injuries to worsen, you should:
- Incorporate daily walking into your routine
- Walk in a variety of situations and on different terrain
Staying active will ensure that you don’t let fear and anxiety get in your way of regaining your mobility. Walking will also help you stay healthy and strong while improving your circulation.
Serious injuries, or when a fall leads to persistent pain, should always be followed by a visit with a doctor. Even a fall that seemed minor at the time of the incident may have caused fractures. A checkup after a fall will ensure that you follow a treatment plan that will get you up and walking as soon as possible.