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Even if you’re the type of person who enjoys a warm shower, it may be time to adjust your line of thinking. There are many benefits of taking a cold shower. Once you get into the habit of doing so, you may never look back.

Here are some of the many reasons to give this a try:

·      Increases alertness: For example, if you’re tired when you wake up in the morning, a cold shower will break you out of your funk. It only takes a few seconds to increase alertness and get you ready for your day.

·      Eases stress: If you’re struggling with stress, let a cold shower come to the rescue.

·      Maintain the health of your hair and skin: A hot shower can quickly dry out your hair and skin, leaving you with a problem you don’t want. However, cold water prevents your skin from losing too much of its natural oils.

·      Reduce muscle soreness: After working out, take a cold shower to reduce muscle soreness and speed up recovery.

If you’ve never thought twice about taking a cold shower, now may be the time to do so. Once you come to recognize the benefits, you may find yourself doing this more often than not.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics. 

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Imagine this: you wake up after a long day in the garden and you can barely move your shoulder. The stiffness is so unbearable that you’d rather remain in the same position than risk moving.

While a stiff shoulder can be extremely uncomfortable, there are steps you can take to slowly regain range of motion. Here are some ideas to consider:

·      Ice therapy: if you’re contending with swelling, place ice on your shoulder three to four times per day for 15 or 20 minutes at a time. This will reduce swelling and some of your discomfort.

·      Physical therapy: if your shoulder doesn’t heal on its own over the course of five to seven days, consult with your doctor and learn more about physical therapy. This may be just what you need to improve range of motion and strengthen your shoulder.

·      Massage therapy: not only does it feel good, but it can also promote faster healing by increasing blood flow to the injured area. You don’t want to jump into massage therapy too quickly, as you may not be ready for it, but after a few days it’s an idea to consider.

A stiff shoulder can be painful and uncomfortable, but it’s nice to know there are several ways to treat this injury. By experimenting with the ideas above, you’ll feel better in no time at all.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics. 

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There’s nothing better than enjoying the outdoors on a hot summer day. However, this has the potential to pose a problem: how will you stay cool so that you can enjoy Mother Nature?

While there’s no way to alter the temperature, there are simple steps you can take to remain cool. Try the following:

·      Wear the appropriate clothing: For example, wear light colored, breathable clothing. This deflects the sun, while also increasing airflow to your body.

·      Seek out shade: If you’ll be in the same basic place the entire time your outdoors, start the day by making note of where you can catch some shade. From a covered roof to a large tree, there are many places to hide from the sun.

·      Stay hydrated: Not only should you drink plenty of water while you’re outdoors, but you should also prepare yourself in advance. If you neglect to hydrate, it’ll eventually take a toll on your body.

·      Avoid the heat: For instance, if you need to mow the lawn but it’s entirely too hot at midday, wait until closer to sunset.

When you take these steps, you’ll find it much easier to stay cool outdoors on a hot summer day. This provides the opportunity to take advantage of everything Mother Nature has to offer.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.  

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There is nothing more enjoyable than eating fresh vegetables during the warm summer months. This is even more so the case if you grew them yourself.

Before you take your first bite, there are a few tips you can follow to keep your raw vegetables safe. Here are three to start with:

•   Wash your hands: With hot water and a bit of hand soap, you can wash your hands to ensure that they’re 100 percent clean before starting.

•   Never wash vegetables with soap or detergent: This should go without saying, but it’s a mistake that many people make. There are a variety of products designed for cleaning raw vegetables, so pick one of these up at your local grocery store.

•   Dry with a clean paper towel: Rather than let your raw vegetables air dry, it’s best to pat them down with a fresh paper towel. Not only does this remove excess water, but it can also do the same to any residual bacteria. Best yet, it only adds a few minutes to the preparation process.

If you enjoy eating raw vegetables, don’t assume they’re safe. Instead, follow these three tips every time you’re preparing vegetables for consumption. It’ll make them safer to eat, and that peace of mind will allow you to better enjoy your food!

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.  

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Popping can occur in any joint of your body, at any time of the day. While this is often related to aging, there are many other reasons why your joints may pop.

Here are some reasons to be aware of:

·      Nitrogen bubbles: Many people don’t realize that the tissue surrounding their joints makes synovial fluid, meant to lubricate the area. When this fluid is released from the joint, such as when cracking your knuckles, it results in a popping sound.

·      Moving ligaments: Tight ligaments may pop during certain movements, such as when you move at a particular angle. In some cases, the popping is accompanied by pain.

·      Rough joint surfaces: This can happen for many reasons, such as osteoarthritis and cartilage loss. With arthritis, for example, the popping may worsen over time as the disease progresses.

Along with the above, some types of injuries and surgical procedures can cause a joint to pop. In some cases, you can eliminate this by improving range of motion through physical therapy.

If you’re concerned about popping joints, consult with your medical team to better understand the cause and best form of treatment.

Jennifer Ferdinand, owner of Serendipity Wellness Studio in Burke, VA, has been practicing massage therapy and esthetics since 2006. She is nationally certified through NCBTMB, and licensed in Virginia for both Massage Therapy and Esthetics.  

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