If you are dealing with a bad back, you are in good company. It’s estimated that 80 percent of people experience back pain at one point or another. As a result, back pain is the number two reason for visiting a doctor. Back pain can come in many forms. It can be a dull constant pain or a sharp shooting pain. There is a lot of information out there on how to treat back pain. However, most would agree that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to back pain. With that in mind, here are some ways to avoid back pain.
If your back is hurting, all you probably want to do is curl up in bed and let your backrest. And it’s true that if you are in back pain, letting your backrest for a little bit might help you get relief.
However, if your goal is to prevent back pain, you should look for ways to increase your exercise routine. When people hurt their back, it is often because they are not engaging in regular physical activity. Their back muscles and their abdominal muscles get weak. They try to make a particular move or go out as a weekend warrior and the result is days laid up in bed with a bad back.
The best way to prevent this from happening is to keep your back and abdominal muscles strong and limber. This means that you should have a workout program that includes a mixture of strength training, stretching, and cardio. Regular physical activity can help lower inflammation, reduce muscle tension, and keep your back healthier longer.
Keep an Eye on Your Weight
Your musculoskeletal structure, including your back, is responsible for supporting your weight. You may not think that those extra few pounds around your midsection are a problem, but your back will say otherwise.
If you have extra weight in your midsection, it causes your center of gravity to shift. This requires your lower back to work harder to keep you standing upright. Extra weight, coupled with a reduction in exercise, is the perfect recipe for back pain.
You don’t need to be a pro athlete or have the physique traditionally associated with runway models to minimize back pain. All that is really needed is for you to stay within 10 pounds of your ideal weight. For many people, losing a few pounds is all they need to do to get long-term sciatica pain relief.
Develop Healthier Habits
If you are a smoker, stop. Smoking does so many detrimental things to your body, including inhibiting the flow of nutrients needed to keep your spinal discs healthy. When you do sustain an injury, smoking makes it harder for your body to recover. This means that any back pain you do have will last longer and may feel more intense. There is a wealth of evidence showing that smokers are particularly vulnerable to back pain.
Sleep in a Better Position
If you are constantly struggling with back pain, you may need to evaluate your sleeping position. Although it may seem counterintuitive, the sleeping position that feels the most comfortable to you is not always the best sleeping position for your back.
A medical professional may suggest that you sleep on your side and have your knees pulled up slightly towards your chest. If you are a back sleeper, it might be recommended that you put a pillow under your knees or lower back.
A lot of people feel more comfortable sleeping on their stomachs. Unfortunately, sleeping on your stomach is the worst thing you can do for back pain. If you feel that you can’t sleep if you’re not on your stomach, then at least put a pillow under your hips. This will help to maintain the curvature of your spine, minimizing back pain.
Your back plays a vital role in your overall mobility and health. It is worth it to take the time to keep your back strong through proper exercise and adjust the way you sleep for better back health. If you take these steps, you are moving in the right direction to minimize back pain.