Most Americans will experience chronic back pain at some point in their lives. This common ailment can make everyday activities difficult to participate in or enjoy. Even low-activity desk jobs can become disrupted by severe back pain. While many suffer through these uncomfortable episodes, treatment and prevention are possible in many cases. Keep back pain from dictating your life, so you can preserve your healthy, productive days.
Relieve Back Pressure
How much pressure do you regularly put your back under? Even if it isn't bothering you yet, many habits will lead to a sensitive, achy back in the future. Heavy bags, purses, or backpacks, poor posture, or improper heavy lifting will take a toll on your back that you'll pay for down the road. No matter how young you are, today is the day to review your daily habits and consider your back health. Lighten up your backpack and purse, sign up for a yoga class to improve your posture and core strength, and learn to lift with your legs, not your back.
Improve Your Sleeping Habits
You can help prevent future back problems while you sleep. Patients who sleep on soft mattresses typically report less back pain. You should also ditch your second pillow – it is important to keep your neck and spine aligned while you sleep.
Order a Salad
Dark leafy greens that are filled with calcium and vitamin K will help strengthen your bones and spine. Make yourself a big salad for lunch tomorrow. Instead of cheap iceberg lettuce, fill it with spinach leaves, romaine lettuce, kale, and broccoli. Other ways to include greens in your diet include loading them up on your sandwiches, making a green smoothie for breakfast, or making veggie wraps for dinner.
Create an Ergonomic Work Environment
It may cost a little money upfront, but investing in an ergonomic work environment is worth every penny. Finding a posture-friendly chair is the most important replacement for your back health, but for ultimate long-term comfort look for an ergonomic desk, keyboard, and computer setup.
If your self-treatment hasn't relieved your back pain, consider seeing a physical therapist. The Orthopaedic & Spine Institute at Oak Hill Hospital can help. Visit us online, or if you have questions about your back pain or need a physician referral, call our free Consult-A-Nurse® service at 1-888-741-5120.