While some neck and back pain can be brought on due to injuries or accidents, most often spine-related pain is simply due to everyday activities not being performed properly. Think of carrying overly heavy grocery bags, bending over for long periods of time to mop floors, doing desk work in the same position for hours on end, lifting a child over your head, or weight training in the gym with bad posture. All of these common daily activities can put great stress on the spine.
It’s also probably safe to say that each of us has dealt with some type of neck or back pain or strain in the past, and we also probably know many others who have found themselves in similar situations. After all, having spine-related pain is extremely common.
The good news about neck and back pain is that preventing it could actually be as simple as modifying a few of your everyday habits and becoming more mindful of your spine health. While your best course for preventing spine-related pain will of course depend on your specific lifestyle and daily routine, we’d like to dedicate this article to addressing a few key ways every person can decrease their likelihood of experiencing neck pain or back pain.
For starters, let’s focus on maintaining proper posture. Whether you have a desk job or are just using your computer for staying in touch with family and friends through email and social media, chances are that you have caught yourself having bad posture while using the computer. It is important to never underestimate the damage bad posture can cause over time, as it can truly wreck havoc on the spine. Instead of suffering, take action by being sure to use your computer only at an ergonomically correct workstation where you can view your screen simply by looking straight in front of you – without needing to tilt your chin up or down. Practicing good posture during all daily activities is important and will allow you to keep your spine strong and healthy.
If your back pain does not go away, it’s important to see our Spine Specialists at Stridewell Same-Day Spine Clinic. Stridewell Tips
Another great way you can keep spine-related pain at bay is by managing stress. It is important to understand that when you are stressed, your muscles are tense. Constant tension from stress can cause both neck and back pain. Different people relieve stress in different ways, so be sure to try a variety of options and find which works best for you. Meditation, tai chi, deep breathing, yoga, or simply taking a warm bath are all great ways to help in reducing the stress that causes spine-related pain.
Your diet and exercise routine also greatly affect your spine health. Constantly eating a diet of highly processed, fatty, fried, and spicy foods will put stress on your nervous and digestive systems, which could in turn cause spine-related issues and pain. A poor diet and lack of exercise may also cause you to be overweight, and excess body weight also puts stress on your spine.
On the other hand, maintaining a healthy body weight and eating a balanced diet that consists of a multitude of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, and dairy products will help your whole body and spine to function well and stay healthy.
Another lifestyle choice that has been shown to increase your likelihood of experiencing spine-related pain is smoking cigarettes. For your spine and general body health, it is very important that you do not smoke cigarettes or breathe in the second-hand cigarette smoke of others. While you probably know that cigarettes cause numerous cancers, you may not have considered that smoking also narrows blood vessels, which result in less oxygen and nutrients reaching the spine. Research has shown that smokers are more susceptible to spine injuries, and it also takes injured smokers longer to heal.
Finally, committing yourself to being physically active is one of the very best ways of preventing spine-related pain. When you’re in good physical condition, you’re less likely to hurt your neck or back or feel pain when doing simple everyday activities such as vacuuming the floor or walking your dog.
We encourage you to adapt a healthy lifestyle and make the necessary adjustments to beat the odds of experiencing neck or back pain. Both your spine and your whole body will benefit from your efforts!read article