COLUMN: Tips to avoid Christmas shopping injuries

Warren Hutson.

Warren Hutson.

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Guest columnist Warren Hutson, of Peak Natural Therapy, gives readers tips on how to avoid dropping while you shop ahead of the festive season.

It’s that time of year again, when thoughts turn to Christmas shopping.

Injuries from shopping are similar to those of walking or running.

However, the majority of Christmas shoppers are not athletes - so injuries are usually ignored and can take time to heal.

The most common injuries are as follows: planter fascitis, shin splints, Achilles tendinopathy and lower back pain.

Planter fascitis is severe sharp pain under or near to the heel.

It is usually caused by walking too far or wearing inadequate footwear.

To combat, try stretching and massage the calf and sole of the feet, especially in the morning and in the day.

Shin splints (tibial stress injury) are not a single medical condition but a symptom of one of several underlying problems.

They usually consists of a dull pain or ache at the front of the shinbone, just above the ankle.

Causes include incorrect footwear or overuse of lower leg muscles.

The best treatment is rest, ice and anti-inflammatory medication and arch supports.

Another injury that can plague shoppers is Achilles tendinopathy, which is a soreness and sometimes results in swelling in the Achilles tendon, which is situated at the back of the lower leg.

The best treatment is again rest from exercise and anti-inflammatory medicine to reduce inflammation.

As for lower back pain, this is discomfort experienced in the lumbar region of the back.

It is caused by lifting, standing carrying weights, putting loads into car boots etc.

The most effective treatment is osteopathy, massage and exercise.

Remember, look after yourselves when Christmas shopping!