20 Nov Tips for a Healthier Back
Experts estimate that at least 80% of people will experience back pain problems at some point in their life. If this issue comes on suddenly, it could indicate an injury or even simple issues like improper posture. Use these tips to reduce problems with back pain and to get a healthier back!
Your Back and Spine: How They Work
Your back is one of the strongest structures of your body. It houses your spine, which is a collection of 33 vertebrae bones that are incredibly strong and protective of your spinal cord. That spinal cord leads to your brain, protected by the skull. Your extremities connect to your back, and your back holds up the rest of your body. It’s constructed of bones, muscles, nerves, ligaments, tendons and many other types of tissues that work in one complete system.
Without your spine and the structure that support it, you wouldn’t be able to sit, stand, walk, or even wrap your arms around a loved one. Over time, your back can take lots of pressure on the joints of the bones and the muscles that support those bones. Many people fail to realize just how important back health is until there is a problem. Generally, back pain is the first sign of back issues forming. That pain can be caused by an injury, back misalignment, neuropathy issues, a pinched nerve, a herniated or bulging disc or more.
When your body moves with everyday activities, twists, turns, exercise and more can knock your bones and joints slowly out of alignment. This can cause pressure buildup and inflammation in an area of the body combatting the extra pressure. Inflammation happens with chronic conditions (such as arthritis) that lead to cartilage and joint deterioration. A healthy spine will follow a normal alignment where pressure is distributed and where movements are smooth. With injuries, you will have pain and problems until you find the cause.
What Caused Your Back Pain?
There are countless causes of back pain. However, we see patients with similar problems all the time, which is how we know what some common causes are for back injuries. If you want a healthier back, try to avoid:
- Poor Posture: Over time, uneven pressure is placed on various joints and muscles. Sit up straight when you can and try standing at your desk sometimes to switch it up. Bring your shoulders back as you sit up and try to make a habit of having that posture.
- Exercise: Exercise doesn’t always cause an injury, but they happen frequently. Don’t jump straight into a rigorous exercise routine. Build up to more time, more weights and more intensity over time to avoid injury.
- Lifting: When lifting, always lift with your legs and put as little strain on your back as possible. Lifting with your back can herniate or bulge a disc, can cause problems with your sciatic nerve and much more.
- Chronic conditions: If you have arthritis, osteoporosis or other chronic condition that affects the musculoskeletal system, make sure you are keeping it controlled. Medications and therapies for the condition can help prevent joint deterioration and can keep your muscles and bones healthy.
- Poor Nutrition: What you eat really matters! If you eat poor, your muscles and bones won’t get the nutrients they need to grow strong. Eat plenty of protein, whole grains, fruits and veggies and take your vitamins. This will help keep your body strong.
- Injury: Injuries in sports, car accidents (like whiplash), and from slips, falls and trips can lead to quick pressure and muscle damage in your back. Always get a medical checkup after slips, falls and accidents to ensure there isn’t any damage.
- Scoliosis: This is a progressive condition causing a curve of the spine in a C or S shape. It is best if treated in early adolescence, as it causes serious back problems with age.
Tips for a Healthier Back
Back pain is incredibly common in the U.S., affecting more than 31 million Americans on an everyday basis. If this is you, definitely seek chiropractic help. Many people suffer back pain from conditions (like misalignment) that are treatable. To have a healthier back, you can try:
- Receiving chiropractic adjustments. These are gentle adjustments a chiropractic doctor performs that seeks to realign the back and spine. It can help many problems with back pain and chronic conditions with the gentle force it uses to get bones and joints back in place.
- Getting better nutrition. This helps problems with neuropathy and with weakness.
- Exercising more. The American Heart Association recommends 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week. If you exercise more, your body gets nutrients from better circulation and it stays stronger. Focus especially on your core, as a stronger core makes your back stronger too.
- Correcting Your Posture. Watch how you sit, stand, squat, etc., and correct it when needed.
- Learning Technique. Don’t get injured from guessing at how to workout or lift weights correctly. Learn correct technique from the experts and always use it.
- Stopping Tobacco or Alcohol. Both of these substances weaken the body, plus cause nerve damage and deterioration of muscles and bones over time.
- Sleeping. When you don’t sleep enough, your body can’t recover and rebuild cells. On days with poor sleep, this is one of the causes of aches and pains.
- Staying Hydrated. Every person needs at least half their body weight in ounces each day to keep circulation normal and the body’s tissues healthy.
Prevention Is Key
If you are experiencing back pain, don’t let it persist. A healthy spine and back is not one that is having pain, even if it is mild pain. If your pain or symptoms happen often, or if you want help controlling a chronic condition, it’s best to seek professional help. We treat patients with injuries and problems with the back and spine every day. To start of getting a healthier back, call Mile High Spine & Pain Center today at (720) 507-0080 with your questions!