A healthy life = a healthy spine!
There are many kinds of lower back pain and it can take some time for diagnosis and treatment to repair all of the damage done to your back over the years (some damage is cumulative, some isn’t) along with any recent injuries to your spine.
But in the meantime, and even if your back hasn’t given you any problems in recent months, there are a number of things you can do, to help strengthen your back, thereby helping to prevent future injury.
Of course if you are worried about the condition of your spine, or if you regularly experience lower back pain, why not pay a visit to your local chiropractor.
1. Most people spend much of their day sitting, either working at a computer, taking telephone calls in the office environment, or sitting on a stool in an assembly line. Such sitting for extended periods is one of the main contributors to a weakened back, and consequent pain.
Your back isn’t made for that kind of stress — sitting puts x3 times more load on your discs than standing!
A good rule of thumb is to get up and walk around every half hour. Try and stretch those back muscles out a bit. Each trip to the water cooler loosens your back muscles and increases circulation.
And almost as important is to purchase an ergonomically correct chair and practice good posture at all times.
2. Exercise to strengthen your core muscles – the all-important abdominal and back muscles
There are a number of simple exercises that you can perform to increase your muscle strength which will help you to reduce your chance of injury and lessen your lower back pain.
3. Rest your spine – the only time your back is truly at rest is when you’re lying down
During the day, your spine can’t catch a break! The only time your back has a chance to recuperate from the day’s activities is when you sleep. So give it every chance possible to rest in a supported and comfortable fashion by getting a mattress designed to provide the most comfort and the most support. Of course, each person is different and selecting the best mattress is a personal choice.
As we spend 1/3 of our lives in bed, it makes sense to sleep on a mattress that will help, rather than hurt our back as it tries to repair and maintain itself.
4. Massage – In addition to relieving stress, massages can lower pain and improve healing
One of the prime benefits of massage is that it enhances the release of endorphins – which are the human body’s natural painkillers – and can help you to cut back on pain medications.
Massage also helps to improve circulation and thereby deliver vital, healing nutrients to the affected areas. Therapeutic massage will almost always help your healing process.
5. Orthopedics – Getting the shoes that support your spine.
When we’re not sitting or lying down, we’re upright – either walking or standing. Therefore, it’s important especially for back pain sufferers to have the appropriate shoes.
Good shoes can prevent pronation or supination of the feet, and can help the spine and body remain properly aligned. Finally, ensure that the fit is snug but not too tight for comfort.
Take Action Today
Although you may be experiencing pain, these tips can help you towards your goal of a healthy and pain-free spine. So much spinal damage is merely cumulative damage which occurs over years and even decades of time, but most of it could be prevented by following the above suggestions.
Remember, you are either vertical (standing, walking, running) or horizontal (sleeping, reading in bed, etc.) or sitting — as far as your spine is concerned. Getting the right shoes, the right mattress, and the right office chair, are the three things that will provide the best bang for the buck when it comes to your spinal health. And certainly, exercise and massage can play an important part too.
Your best resource in all of this, is your Doctor of Chiropractic who can advise you and provide back-saving treatments that will allow you to be all that you can and should be.