Cantissimo Senior Living Blog

Cantissimo Senior Living blog - an educational resource for older adults in lifestyle, wellness, and more.

Posts about Pain Management:

Why Do I Feel Stiff When I Wake up? 7 Tips for Relief

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Cantissimo Senior Living Mar 5, 2021 10:05:09 AM
Why Do I Feel Stiff When I Wake up? 7 Tips for Relief

Do you often wake up feeling stiff or aching? Do you have trouble getting out of bed in the morning because of your sore and stiff muscles? This is very common and often referred to as morning stiffness. Even though it is common, many people don't understand the causes of morning stiffness or how to avoid it. Many people think it solely has to do with getting older and the aging of the body. While this can certainly be a reason and a normal occurrence, aging is, more often than not, unlikely to be the reason for morning stiffness.

The most common cause of morning stiffness is tight muscles or worn and tired joints. Muscle tightness can often be mistaken for joint pain. These symptoms can also be an indication of arthritis or inflammation, but that is not always the case.

The fact is that joints do not always age at the same rate as the rest of the body. They can age faster due to wear and tear, or they can age more slowly if they are taken care of properly. Typically, overweight people are more subject to having worn joints and feeling stiff in the morning. Cartilage works as the cushioning of your joints. As your joints age, cartilage dries out and stiffens. As cartilage dries out, your joints also lose necessary lubrication, which also contributes to morning stiffness. This leads to tightness in the morning, stiff tendons, and weakened muscles. It is very difficult to reverse the symptoms of aging joints. Still, there are different things that you can do to reduce morning stiffness and the aging of your joints.

Strengthening Your Abs Will Not Relieve Your Tight Back

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Resolve Pain Guru Mar 3, 2021 9:30:52 AM
Strengthening Your Abs Will Not Relieve Your Tight Back

Tightening your abdominal muscles to strengthen your core does not relieve chronic back pain. It is possible that this approach will even make things worse!

When you take the approach of strengthening or tightening the abdominal muscles in order to counterbalance tight back muscles, you are working against your body. It results in a co-contraction of both the front and back body muscles. This then creates a braced-liked situation that creates more layers of problems than solutions.

10 Changes You Can Make to Reduce Inflammation

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Cantissimo Senior Living Feb 22, 2021 12:02:00 PM
10 Changes You Can Make to Reduce Inflammation

Inflammation is part of the body's defensive mechanism. When a cut swells up and turns red, that's inflammation healing you at work. However, it can contribute to various health issues, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, arthritis (including psoriatic arthritis), cancer, and even depression when it goes into overdrive. It is worth noting that these health issues are also sparked by many factors such as poor diet, smoking, lack of sleep, etc.

When the immune system is activated without an illness or injury to combat, an inflammatory response may happen. The cells of the immune system that usually defend us begin to damage healthy arteries and joints because there is little to repair. When you do not eat a proper diet, do not get enough exercise, or have too much tension, the body reacts by increasing inflammation. Over time, chronic inflammation may have detrimental effects. 

Now, let's take it a step further and look at tips to reduce unnecessary inflammation.

10 Easy Tips to Help Manage Your Arthritis

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Cantissimo Senior Living Feb 16, 2021 10:54:32 AM
10 Easy Tips to Help Manage Your Arthritis

Arthritis is a common medical condition. Especially for older adults, pain and inflammation in the joints are common and tend to worsen over time. While constant pain in your joints can be disruptive and distracting, there are many ways that you can learn to cope with arthritis pain or even reduce the sensations of pain.

Types of Arthritis

There are two main types of arthritis: osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA). While both of them lead to pain and inflammation in joints, the causes behind each type are vastly different.

Why Nose Breathing Is Crucial

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Resolve Pain Guru Feb 3, 2021 10:25:14 AM
Why Nose Breathing Is Crucial

The breath grounds, connects, and heals the nervous system, which is why nose breathing is essential.

Did you know that right nostril breathing (RNB) has a very different and distinct effect on the nervous system compared to left nostril breathing (LNB)?

The right nostril is the energizing and heating component of the breath. It supports a sympathetic “fight or flight” nervous system response (SNS) in the body. Conversely, the left nostril is the cooling component of the breath. It supports a parasympathetic “rest and digestion” nervous system (PNS) response in the body.

When we are in a state of balance and good health, the dominant nostril that we breathe through changes every 90-120 minutes, this is known as our nasal cycle. This cycle is under the control of our Autonomic Nervous system. It regulates the balancing of the PNS and SNS in the body. When we are out of balance, this nasal rhythm becomes out of balance, which has adverse effects on our mental, physical and emotional health and well-being.

Winter is Coming: Combatting Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

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Cantissimo Senior Living Dec 21, 2020 11:18:38 AM
Winter is Coming: Combatting Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

This year has been one for the books, and the COVID-19 pandemic has a considerable effect on our holidays and how we spend them. Unlike past years, many older adults will not be able to spend the holidays with their loved ones, and this may be affecting your mood. So, is this gloomy mood due to this crazy year, or could it be something more?

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a form of depression that comes in cycles with the seasons. You may notice that you begin to feel less motivated, have a suppressed appetite, and don't engage with the things and people you love as much as you used to. As the days get colder and shorter, your circadian rhythms, or your internal clock telling you when to wake up and go to bed, get out of balance. In turn, this can affect your hormone regulation, which leads to the feelings associated with depression. 

People who live farther away from the equator, and those with anxiety or bipolar disorder are more likely to be affected by Seasonal Affective Disorder than other individuals. If you have been feeling depressed and it has lasted for more than a few weeks, you may want to try taking some steps to combat this and speak to your doctor about additional options to help you feel better this winter season.  

Review the following six tips to help combat Seasonal Affective Disorder this winter season:

Top 6 Ways to Stay Healthy as You Age

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Resolve Pain Guru Dec 1, 2020 10:55:55 AM
Top 6 Ways to Stay Healthy as You Age

We’d love to share with you six pillars of health that date back thousands of years and come from the world of Ayurveda known as the medicine of yoga

The Six Pillars are meant to be incorporated into your daily life to help you stay healthy, vibrant, and maintain your independence. After all, this is the time of life to travel, play with grandkids, volunteer in your community, and enjoy quality time with family and friends. 

The human body/mind has some pretty basic requirements to maintain energy, proper elimination, and stress resiliency. These practices are simple and easy and will support you to feel great!

Understanding the Connection of Good Breathing to Health

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Resolve Pain Guru Nov 24, 2020 11:57:00 AM
Understanding the Connection of Good Breathing to Health

Breath is life force and essential to supporting all the functions and systems in our bodies, thereby regulating health. As we age and go through the trials and tribulations of life, it is common that we adopt patterns of breathing that are not optimal. Some of those patterns include mouth breathing, erratic breathing, breath-holding, and even reverse breathing. 

All of these patterns affect how much the diaphragm, our primary breathing muscle, is able to contract and release, corresponding to vagus nerve stimulation, the brain-gut connection, and our body’s relaxation response.

The vagus nerve is the longest in the body, running from the brainstem to the gut. Simulating the vagus nerve activates the body’s relaxation response, reducing heart rate and blood pressure.

So, how do we stimulate the vagus nerve? By first bringing attention to our current breathing pattern, and then beginning to activate the diaphragm as we breathe, taking slow, deep breaths.

What are the Best Sleeping Positions for Older Adults?

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Cantissimo Senior Living Nov 5, 2020 12:34:43 PM
What are the Best Sleeping Positions for Older Adults?

Sleep is vital when growing up, and the same is true as we age. However, for older adults, sleeping patterns frequently change. Often, older adults begin experiencing trouble falling asleep or waking up. Others struggle to reach a state of deep sleep. That said, when this happens, don't assume it's a normal part of aging. These could be symptoms of insomnia or other sleep-related conditions. Therefore, ensuring you receive a good night's sleep is important and needs to be consistent, just like when you were younger.

Through a good night's sleep, your mental health and memory improve. Your body can repair worn-out cells and tissues, and your immune is refreshed. With this, your body can better fight diseases and stay healthy. On the other hand, a poor night's sleep can make you susceptible to memory problems, attention issues, and even depression. Further, it leads to a sense of fatigue during the day and worsened focus.

Best Sleeping Positions for Older Adults

If you want to enhance your sleep quality and health, your sleeping position may be a great place to start. For a full and restorative sleep, consider changing to one of the following recommended sleep positions: