Top tips for a pain free move

During a hectic house move, your main concerns will probably centre on moving and protecting your valuables. Sometimes, however, it is all too easy to forget about one of the most important things - your health.

We’ve pulled together a range of simple steps and precautions you can take to make your house move as comfortable as possible.

All hands on deck – persuade as many helpers as you can to come along in shifts to help with packing and unpacking. It will make the job much easier and it can be fun at the same time.

Combine heavy and light items in each box putting the heaviest at the bottom. Books and pillows are a good combination.

Always test the box for weight before you lift it. You can do this by rocking it gently onto an edge.

Get as close as you can to items before you pick them up and make sure you bend your knees. Try to approach items by stepping around the corner of them, this allows you to get closer.

Make sure you are in a comfortable position, with a secure hold, before you make any kind of effort.

When lifting, lowering, pushing or pulling something, always lead upwards with your head to ensure the spine is in its safest position.

Carry items close to you and try to hold them with one hand underneath and the other around it to steady things.

Pay attention to the amount of effort you are making. If something feels too heavy, it is probably not safe for you to move alone. Get help!

Treat yourself to a massage before and after the move to help relieve any tension in your muscles.

When you are stressed, your muscles tense, so you are more likely to be injured. Stopping to rest and take a few deep breaths every now and then may help prevent tension mounting.

Removal days can be long and chaotic. Keep water with you and drink plenty as you go along. Dehydrated muscles strain easily.

What should you do if you hurt yourself?

Ensure you seek medical advice if you are having difficulty walking or if the injured area is particularly bruised or swollen and you are in significant pain.

If you feel the injury is relatively minor, you can treat it yourself with painkillers; rest (for no more than 24 hours); ice (a bag of frozen peas wrapped in a towel and applied for 20-30 minutes); and elevation (if it is a hand or leg that is injured, elevate it to heart level).

Compression bandages such as Tubigrip are also useful for swollen feet/ankles or hands/wrists.

For simple muscle stiffness and overuse, try a warm bath with Epsom salts. Putting six cups of Epsom salts in the bath can help to relieve muscle pain and lower your blood pressure.

If you think your injury is starting to improve after 24 hours then ‘get moving’. Start with gentle, controlled movements and then build up to normal, everyday tasks as the pain allows. Don’t be afraid to move. Relaxed and controlled movements will improve the blood flow to the damaged area and help the injury to repair itself.

However, if after 24 hours of self-treatment your aches and pains are not beginning to ease, you’ll need to consider another course of action. Should you still have significant pain or restricted movement it would be wise to book an appointment to see your GP or physiotherapist.

A physiotherapist will be able to give you all the advice you need on the right kind of movements or stretches you should be doing. They can also advise you on what rehabilitation you might require if you have taken on a little bit more than you should.