SCI Community Magazine

Look after your health this winter

The colder months can be rough for everyone, regardless of mental or physical health. It’s important to be proactive in trying to keep those seasonal blues at bay, so here are five tips and tricks to help you look after your mind, body and soul this winter.

1Get Outside

Getting outside in the winter can be difficult in a wheelchair with all the snow and ice, not to mention the very cold temperatures! However, getting outside and breathing in some fresh air can be great for your mental health, especially on those sunny days. When sidewalks are cleared, try taking a stroll down the street or, if that’s not possible, bundle up and enjoy a hot beverage just outside your front door.

2Change Your Environment

While staying bundled up at home all winter sounds great in theory, it’s easy to become bored, lonely and sad. If getting outside isn’t your thing, try to change up your environment by getting out of the house. There are lots of engaging indoor activities to do in the winter, such as visiting museums and art galleries or going to the theatre or movies.

3Make Plans

Making plans with family and friends, so you always have something to look forward to, is a great way to make the winter a little easier. Surrounding yourself with the right people is always important for your mental well-being, so reach out to others and make some plans together. Reaching out works both ways, as you never know who might really need to hear from you.

4Artificial Sunlight

Light therapy lamps provide bright artificial light that mimics sunlight and can help combat seasonal affective disorder (SAD). If you think you are experiencing SAD, you should talk to your doctor to discuss possible treatments, but light therapy lamps can be used to supplement existing treatment methods or be used on their own.

5Be Productive

Winter can be a great time to complete those tasks that you’ve been procrastinating. Whether it’s the spring cleaning you never got around to, finally putting together that photo album or testing out some new recipes – try to make your time indoors productive. While watching movies and reading are wonderful activities to pass the time, it’s healthy to change it up and do something that feels more like an accomplishment. It can be hard to get motivated, but once you get going, it can be quite satisfying.

Andrea Nelson is an athlete specializing in Parakayaking. She is currently on Team Canada and working towards attending the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo.

 

 

Andrea Nelson | Winter 2020

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