Exercise Avoiding Back Pain
Exercise may be the last thing mind when you are in pain, but exercise is the most important component to pain management therapy and is a great preventative measure too. A consistent exercise program keeps back muscles flexible and strong to stabilize the spine. Exercise increases blood flow and helps reduce inflammation. Stretching before and after physical activity is key: without stretching the muscles can become strained and can increase pain/stiffness rather than lessen it.
Another important aspect of pain control is to maintain a healthy weight. Extra weight changes the center of gravity of the body and places more stress in to the structures of the low back. This can increase the stress on the back and exacerbate symptoms.
Posture Avoiding Back Pain
A cause of chronic pain is when a patients are required to sit for extended periods throughout the day. Sitting for long periods of time actually place more strain on the back. Sitting causes compression of the vertebral disks and causes them to lose fluid. Ensure you sit up straight and use a chair that provides good lumbar support. Place your feet flat on the floor at a height where the knees slightly above the hips reduces stress. Lastly, take frequent breaks and walk around regularly to ease stress on the spine and back muscles.
Sleeping in the proper position is as important as maintaining good posture. A physician or other medical professional can suggest the best position for the specific origins of various types of pain; however, there are some general guidelines to follow as well. A side position with the knees slightly raised may be ideal for people with lower back pain, but some people prefer to sleep on their backs. If so, using a pillow to support the lower back and the knees may lessen the symptoms. Sleeping on the stomach is particularly hard on pain, but if need be, patients can place a pillow under the hips to lessen the strain.
Lifting properly can prevent back pain and allow patients to complete household and functional tasks. Bending from the waist can cause serious back problems. A safer option is to bend at the knees and use the leg muscles to provide the lifting while holding the item close to the body. Keep the item close to your body, avoiding twisting, and also remember light objects can cause just as much damage as heavy ones if not lifted properly.
Wear Proper Shoes
Wearing comfortable, low-heeled shoes will also lessen pain. Shoes with heels higher than one inch can cause stress on the muscles and mis-align the bones in the spine, which will increase pain. If high heels are to be worn, limit the amount of time worn and bring lower heeled shoes to change into. Don’t forget to stretch after wearing them!
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