As we age, our bodies experience a great deal of wear and tear. From picking up our children or even just sleeping in awkward positions, our backs experience a great deal of stress. We’ve all heard someone complaining of back pains, and it’s no wonder why. Whether you’re looking into fixing a failed back surgery or simply want to eliminate the aches and pains of everyday life, here are 5 ways to look after your back.
Number 1: Address Issues Fast
Many of us tend to brush off the subtle signs our bodies give us. We don’t address spinal health problems until it’s too late. Don’t be that person! Waiting can be dangerous and lead to permanent damage, or premature spinal aging. Paralysis is the worst-case scenario! Our spines are crucial for nearly all kinds of physical activity. If you’ve noticed a niggling pain in a certain area of your back, it’s a good idea to get it checked out by a professional.
Number 2: Stretching and Exercise
Invest in your body-the more you work it, the better it works! Exercising frequently helps to improve our balance and trains our muscles to take weight off our spines, particularly with a well-toned core. Make sure that you’re strengthening those abdominal muscles. It’s also crucial to maintain your weight at a healthy level. Amongst the other health issues it brings, obesity puts extra stress on our spines, leading to more rapid deterioration.
Number 3: Posture
I see you slouching right now-yes, you! Here’s your reminder to sit up straight. Not only does good posture look much more presentable, it also works wonders for spinal health. Many of us end up spending hours craning our necks to stare at computer or phone screens for hours on end. Even an uncomfortable seating position in a vibrating car can be traumatic for our spines when it’s done every day. Make a habit out of sitting correctly and adjusting your seats to accommodate your spine-your back will thank you!
Number 4: Technique
We all lift things, whether it’s weights, boxes, or a screaming three-year-old! It’s important to learn and apply correct lifting techniques to avoid back problems. Bend your knees and squat, then tense your abdominal muscles and hold the object close to your chest as you stand. You should also encourage your children to carry their school backpacks on both shoulders, as this evenly distributes the weight of those textbooks. A little bit of technique goes a long way!
Number 5: Kick Off your Sunday Shoes
Last but not least–footwear! Avoid wearing high heels and ensure that the shoes you wear all day are great for shock absorption and offer support for your foot arches. Your back-and feet-will thank us! Go a step further and avoid wearing tight pants. Not only does skin-tight clothing cut off blood flow, it also stops us from using the correct biomechanics when we’re twisting or bending. Comfort over style, any day.
Have Your Own Back!
Now that you’ve read about how to care for your back, start incorporating these tips into your daily life. Small changes to your routine will have massive long-term benefits.