Back pain can be crippling.
If you’re one of the 31 million Americans who’ve experienced this potentially debilitating problem, you know how hard it can be to deal with.
Whether you’re already experiencing back problems or just want to prevent this condition from plaguing you down the road, listen up– there are steps you can begin taking to find comfort and relief.
Keep reading for a look at back pain prevention and eight common causes of this uncomfortable condition.
Sitting for Too Long
Even with regular exercise and a proper diet, spending hours behind a desk, at the wheel, or on the couch can have serious consequences. Unlike other animals, our bodies are just not made to sit all day.
One area of the body that really suffers when you stay sitting all day is your back. Sitting in one place, with a screen in front of you tends to cause poor posture and neck strain.
If you have to sit at a desk all day, getting up and moving every 30 minutes or so can help. It’s also a good idea to pick a supportive chair and have your desk properly adjust to your height. Your back will thank you.
Bad Exercise Technique
Here’s another common cause of back pain that’s easy to avoid.
If you’re exercising regularly, you’re doing your body a world of good, but, you’ve got to be careful. A lot of injuries can occur in the gym, and back injuries are one of the easiest problems to run into.
When exercising, make sure you’re using correct positions and be sure to choose weights you’re comfortable with. It’s also important to be adequately trained and understand the exercises you’re performing to ensure you don’t end up injured.
One surefire way to end up with back pain or an injury is by not paying attention when lifting large or heavy objects.
Let’s face it, most of us don’t need to move big, heavy objects all that often. When we do, many of us just don’t pay attention to the correct way to life or pull the heavy object.
Next time you decide to rearrange your living room or clean up your garage, think about what you’re doing. Is there a smarter way to lift that couch?
Remember to lift with your legs, not your back. And, know your limits–being careful with how much you lift.
Home Repairs and Chores
Here’s another easy way to injure your back.
Working around the house–whether you’re just cleaning up or taking care of some much-needed repairs–can be tough work. It takes a while to get things done and can leave you feeling pretty tired.
So, be careful. When you’re tired, it’s much easier to slip up and hurt yourself. From trying to lift something that’s a bit too heavy, to taking a nasty fall, be careful when taking care of things around the house. Be sure to use proper form when lifting heavy objects and try not to work yourself to the point of exhaustion.
If you spend your weekends on the field or the court, be careful. While team sports are a great way to stay active and fit as you age, they’re also one of the easiest ways to hurt your back.
Don’t quit your team just yet though. Instead, make sure that you’re careful not to do anything that might put undue strain on your back. Always use proper form and pay attention to your surroundings.
Another major factor that can lead to back pain and other issues is inactivity.
Long periods of inactivity are not great for your body. Sitting also makes it tough for the body to get the kind of use it needs to build and maintain essential muscles and joints.
If you have to sit or stay in one place for long periods for work, make sure you get up and move when you can and get some much-needed exercise in when you’re not working.
While stress might be hard to avoid at times, be sure you’re taking measures to prevent it from dominating and affecting your life in negative ways. Try exercising or meditating as a way to release the tension building up in your life.
If you’re experiencing back pain but can’t seem to identify the source, the probable cause could be underlying medical problems.
Back pain could be caused by several medical problems from arthritis, to a difficult pregnancy, or even some types of cancer.
If you’re having back problems and can’t seem to figure out the source of the pain, it helps to check with your medical provider for a complete diagnosis.
Back Pain Prevention: How to Keep Your Back Feeling Great
Many back problems are preventable; they just require a little lifestyle adjustment.
If your back is feeling a little sore, take a look at your day. Are you sitting for most of the day? Have you lifted something a little too heavy recently?
Back pain prevention doesn’t have to be difficult. A few changes to your day, plus regular activity and exercise can really help a tired back feel better.
But, if the back pain extends beyond your back or seems worse than the common discomforts caused by lifestyle choices, don’t wait, seek medical help right away. Like many medical conditions, delaying treatment could lead to more severe problems.