There are certain habits that we sometimes engage in…habits that we do not realize are harmful to our health
1. Wearing heels
High heels affect our posture, put pressure on joints, and can lead to a range of conditions including arthritis, hammer toes, back pain and tendon injuries. To minimise damage, limit your heels to 1.5 inches for daily wear, and wear insoles to help reduce the pressure on joints.
2. Carrying a heavy handbag (I’m so guilty of this one!!!)
With the rising number of gadgets and accessories the majority of women haul around, many of us are carrying around several pounds of weight on our shoulders every day. While you may not feel the effects right now, lugging around a heavy handbag can lead to serious back problems and neck pain as well as poor posture. Don’t wait until the damage is done – do your health a favour and try clearing out all non-essential items and switching to a smaller bag.
3. Sleeping in makeup
Leaving makeup on overnight – along with the dirt and oil that naturally accumulates on skin throughout the day – is a quick route to clogged pores, congested skin and spots. Sleeping with mascara and eye makeup on can also affect your health by causing eye irritation, bloodshot eyes or even infection.
4. Wearing the wrong bra size
It is thought that more than 70 per cent of women are wearing the wrong bra size. However, wearing a badly fitted bra can not only affect the look of your clothes, but research suggests it can cause a range of health problems including back, neck and breast pain, breathing difficulties, poor posture, skin irritation, circulation problems and even irritable bowel syndrome. Rather than guessing your size, make sure you get measured to ensure you are getting the support you need.
5. Worrying and harbouring regrets
Stress is damaging to both our physical and mental health, and women are twice as likely as men to suffer from stress-related disorders, as well as having higher rates of depression and anxiety. Worrying about the future and dwelling on regrets can also add to our problems, with research suggesting that women are more than twice as likely as men to harbour regrets over lost loves and broken relationships.
6. Obsessing over appearance
Many women tend to overly obsess over their idea of the “perfect” body. Research findings have shown that 16 per cent of the normal or underweight women studied believed themselves to be overweight, while 90 per of women wanted to change at least one aspect of their appearance. Body insecurity not only affects our mental health, but it can also lead to physical damage caused by extreme diets, yo-yo dieting, eating disorders and cosmetic surgery.
7. Not getting enough sleep
Unluckily for women, statistics suggest that sleep problems affect more women than men, while a study by the University of Michigan found that women are more than twice as likely to give up sleep to care for others. Unfortunately, sleep has been found to affect women’s blood pressure and mood more than men’s, making it imperative that you do your best to get a good night’s sleep.
8. Putting themselves last
Not only are women more likely to compromise their sleeping habits to care for children and others, they are also prone to putting their own wants and needs at the bottom of a hectic to-do list of chores and obligations. To avoid running yourself into the ground, learn to sometimes say no to those requests and commitments that are less than essential, and make sure you set aside some “me” time each week to do something enjoyable just for you.