Mums need more me time
A new survey confirms something most of us probably suspected! Mums are the centre of their families’ world, but consistently neglect their own health. Commissioned by Deep Freeze Cold Pack, it suggests that nine out of 10 mums consistently put family needs first, and 1 in 5 never or rarely stops to check if their own needs are being met.
Up to 50 per cent of women surveyed take all the responsibility for tasks such as food shopping, cooking, washing clothes, tidying up, buying birthday gifts, and kids’ bedtime routines. And around a third look after family finances, packed lunches, and the school or nursery run too! Only 17 per cent said they manage to carve out some ‘me time’ during the day.
When mums do get a moment, their favourite treat is to relax in the bath, with more than eight out of 10 going for this option. Other options include cooking, going for a walk, reading a book or listening to music.
GP Dr Nisa Aslam, comments: ‘Mums shouldn’t neglect their own wellbeing. Staying fit, eating healthily, and taking time to relax are all important, or health issues, such as muscular aches and pains, can start to creep up.’ In the Deep Freeze Cold Patch survey, more than six in 10 women reported experiencing back pain, while around a quarter had suffered neck or shoulder pain.
Dr Aslam adds: ‘Back pain is the most common muscular complaint in adults of all ages and is often linked to a poor sitting posture and the way we bend down to pick things up – something that mums do many times a day! Instead of using the large muscles in the legs and glutes to squat down, most adults stoop over using their back muscles. This can lead to strain in the lower back. It’s really important that back strains are prevented with good posture – for example sitting up straight and using the stomach muscles while sitting at a desk or driving the car.’
Deep Freeze Cold Patch Personal Trainer Emily Williams shares her top three simple exercises to help strengthen and stabilise muscles and thus relieve muscular discomfort in the lower back. They can be done at home in minutes, with no equipment needed.
Reach-ups: These exercises help with the transversus abdominis muscle that reaches right across the front of the abdominal and out to the sides. Basically, it hugs the abdominals. To do the reach-ups, lie on your back, with feet hip width apart. Breathe out and tilt your pelvis up. Hold your hands straight up in the air, palms facing each other. As you breathe out, pull your shoulders and your head slightly off the floor as though you are reaching up. Hold for two seconds, then release, bringing the arms back down to the floor. Repeat this move 10 times, three to five times a day.
The Bird-Dog: Start on all fours, pulling your abdominal muscles in, as though you are pulling your belly button towards your spine. Take the opposite arm and leg and extend them while exhaling out. Squeeze your glutes, keeping your hips and shoulders straight. Repeat on the other side. Do this exercise 10 times, three to five times a day.
Side Leg Pulse: Lie on your side, with knees at a 90-degree angle and head supported with your hand. Hips, shoulders and knees should be in a straight line. Take the top leg and extend, so it is now straight. Bring the straight leg up, toes pointing toward the ceiling slightly and pulse for two to three seconds, then bring it back down. Repeat 10 times on each side, three to five times a day.
- Deep Freeze Cold Patch is a fast and convenient way to comfort those aching muscles. The long-lasting adhesive patch soothes and comforts the back in pregnancy and beyond. It works like ice, but unlike ice it is convenient, does not burn and can be left in place for several hours. The patch provides cooling, soothing relief and cold therapy on the go for up to three hours.