Prevent Back Pain with Day & Night Lifestyle Changes

Prevent Back Pain with Day & Night Lifestyle Changes

Simple Lifestyle Changes That Prevent Back Pain

I’d say 20-30% of patients we see at the clinic are being referred for back pain. It can be different conditions including spinal stenosis, bulging discs, sciatica, and other back issues. It can be very unpleasant, where you can experience pain that radiates to the leg, at times burning, tingling, or at times would feel like pins and needles all the way down the leg.

馃憠馃憠馃憠Top Tips to ease Chronic Pain Naturally

About four out of five Americans suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. It can take many forms, but lower back pain is the most common. Fortunately, there are many simple lifestyle changes you can make to avoid an aching back.

DAYTIME LIFESTYLE CHANGES

1.聽聽聽聽聽 Maintain a healthy body weight. Being overweight strains your back and disrupts your balance. Abdominal fat is especially problematic. Spot reducing is a myth but your midsection will usually slim down along with the rest of your body when you lose excess pounds.

2.聽聽聽聽聽 Exercise regularly. Yoga is a great way to improve your posture and flexibility and strengthen your muscles. Any physical activity can help fight inflammation by increasing the flow of blood and nutrients to your back.

 

3.聽聽聽聽聽 Eat more calcium. Strong bones help protect you from osteoporosis, a leading cause of back pain, especially for women. Eat your yogurt and leafy green vegetables like spinach or kale.

4.聽聽聽聽聽 Follow safety guidelines at work. Ergonomics is now commonplace in workplaces due to the high cost of injuries.聽Back injuries are the most common type of workplace injuries. Talk with your employer about job design features that will keep you productive and safe. You can opt for an ergonomic chair or a high – low office desk that allows you to stand in between tasks.

5.聽聽聽聽聽 Practice good posture. Make it a habit to press your lower abdomen against your spine. Keep your shoulders held back and relaxed. Hold your head up.

馃憠馃憠馃憠Learn About the Inflatable Traction Device for Neck Pain

6.聽 聽 聽Observe Good Sitting Posture.Try to use an adjustable chair that will give you all the support you need. Prop a pillow against your lower back if needed. Keep your knees a little higher than your hips. Change positions or take a brief walk frequently.

7.聽聽聽聽聽 Observe Proper and Safe Lifting.Most people have surely heard the statement, “Lift with your legs, not with your back”. This is to make sure you are using the most powerful muscle in the body to lift, and not the smaller and weaker back muscles. I have had many patients rupture a disc from lifting and twisting the trunk.

聽 Bend down at the knees and lift with your legs to avoid putting the whole load on your back. Carry heavy objects close to your body. Get help if an object is too heavy for you to lift alone.

8.聽聽聽聽聽 Dress comfortably. Stiletto heels and heavy handbags can cause knee and back pain. So can overstuffing your pockets or wearing anything two sizes too small. Enjoy dressing up for special occasions but ensure your everyday wardrobe allows a full range of movement and your tote bag stays under 10 percent of your body weight.

NIGHTIME LIFESTYLE CHANGES

1.聽聽聽聽聽 Select the right mattress for you. A moderately firm mattress usually works best because it adapts to the natural curves of your spine. If you have a firm mattress, an inch or two of padding on top may help.

2.聽聽聽聽聽 Sleep on your side. Sleeping on your side with your knees slightly bent helps protect your back. Even better, put a small pillow between your knees to keep your hips aligned.

3.聽聽聽聽聽 Sleep on your back. Sleeping on your back is also good. Stick a small pillow under your knees to maintain the curve in your lower back. Use enough pillow to position neck comfortably, not flexed forward as it can make breathing uncomfortable and stretch the posterior structures of the neck.

4.聽聽聽聽聽 Stop sleeping on your stomach. Lying on your stomach puts extra stress on your back and neck. You can wake up with neck stiffness and this bad habit can cause a rotational pressure in the neck alignment compromising your discs. Break the habit, lie on your side, and use pillows supporting your neck and shoulder. For better comfort, also place pillows in between your knees to maintain good spine alignment in sidelying. that will make it harder to roll over.

5.聽聽聽聽聽 Avoid alcohol. You may fall asleep faster by drinking alcohol but it impairs the quality of your sleep and you’re more likely to wake up with aches and pains. Some prescription medications may also interfere with sleep.

6.聽聽聽聽聽 Apply heat. A heat pack is an easy and safe way to keep a little ache from growing into a big one. Get a hot water bottle or a pack that you can microwave and apply to any spot that needs a little extra care. I do want to note that microwaveable heat pads do not last as long and you may end up going back to heat it up over and over. A聽 commercial plug-in heat pad like this one is available on Amazon.

I just happen to refer my patients to Amazon, Walgreens, Target, or Walmart to get one like this especially one with an automatic shut-off to ensure safety.

It is imperatively important to see a doctor if you feel any numbness or tingling, or if you experience severe or chronic pain. For most backaches, these self-help techniques will give you effective relief and keep the pain from coming back.

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馃憠馃憠馃憠Tips to Relieve Sore Muscles

4  QUICK FIXES To Strengthen Your Back & Ease Pain

4 QUICK FIXES To Strengthen Your Back & Ease Pain

Reduce Pain and Strengthen Your Lower Back With These Easy Tips

Do you suffer from lower back pain? While lower back ailments can feel like the worst kind of torture, you can actually experience lasting relief and perhaps healing by making some easy changes to your routines.

Try these easy strategies to reduce your lower back pain:

馃憠馃憠馃憠Manage Pain by Improving Posture

1.聽聽聽聽聽 Correct your sitting posture. If you spend endless hours in front of the computer at work or home, it鈥檚 very likely that your posture is contributing to your back pain.

After some time sitting at a computer, it鈥檚 instinctual to start slouching, craning the neck, or contorting the body in some other way.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Ensure the back of your chair is upright and your bottom is pushed towards the very back of the chair.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Pay attention to your body so the minute it starts to slouch, you can return to an upright position.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Ensure the computer screen is at eye level so you鈥檙e not forced to tilt your head forward, thereby putting strain on the neck and subsequently the lower back.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 It also helps to get up every so often and move around to get your blood circulating and relieve the stiffness that can come from sitting too long.聽

馃憠馃憠馃憠Harsh Truths About Sitting & How to Reduce The Health Risks

2.聽聽聽聽 Wear comfortable shoes. Whether you鈥檙e a lover of high heels or flats, there are good choices and not-so-good choices, as your shoes affect your back. You owe it to your lower back – and your entire body for that matter – to shop for shoes that offer complete support.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 When shopping for heels, go with a “reasonable” heel height.

Excessively high shoes put excessive stress on the arch of the foot, which can easily affect the lower back.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 When looking for flats, remember that the sole should have enough cushioning to prevent your back from the shock that comes when the feet are in too close contact with hard ground surfaces.

3.聽聽聽聽 Always stretch after a workout. Stretching after a workout – especially a rigorous one – can loosen the muscles and help realign the back so it is less prone to damage.

 

4.聽聽聽聽聽 Support your back in bed. If you鈥檙e in bed for eight hours each night, that鈥檚 1/3 of your life spent in bed. Your sleeping posture is probably one of the main reasons you鈥檙e experiencing nagging lower back issues. See how your sleeping position can affect your back and use these tips for positive results:

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 If you sleep on your back, put pillows under your knees to support the back and prevent it from becoming strained during long hours of sleep.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 If you sleep on your side, place pillows between your knees to keep your spine in a neutral position, which is important for preserving the health of your back.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Sleeping on your stomach causes the neck and head to twist unnecessarily, which can put undue stress on your back, so it鈥檚 wise to avoid this sleeping position as much as possible.聽 聽

Let these tips reduce your pain.聽

Making the changes necessary to support your back will enable you to finally achieve the lower back health you鈥檝e been missing out on.

You鈥檒l love the way you feel!

Check this video for easy exercises for your back:聽

Until the next issue!

The Harsh Truth about Sitting and How to Reduce the Health Risks

The Harsh Truth about Sitting and How to Reduce the Health Risks

聽How to Reduce the Health Risks from Long Hours of Sitting

A sedentary lifestyle increases one’s risk for health issues as commonly known. Weak,聽brittle bones (osteoporosis), poor circulation, weight gain, and poor cardiovascular endurance are just a few to mention.聽

Why is it a piece of common advice to stretch every chance you get when on a long flight? It is to avoid getting blood clots and swelling of the legs or ankles from sitting for long periods.

馃憠馃憠馃憠Prevent Back Pain with These Simple Lifestyle Changes

By now you鈥檝e probably heard that sitting can cause health complications and even shorten your lifespan. If your boss won鈥檛 spring for an office full of treadmill desks, you can still stay by finding other ways to spend more time on your feet.

In fact, a recent study found that walking for just 2 minutes each hour can make a big difference.

That鈥檚 good news for the 80% of Americans who find it difficult to keep up with the minimum amount of exercise experts recommend. For example, the American Heart Association suggests at least 150 minutes a week of moderate-intensity exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise.

There are many practical ways to overhaul a sedentary lifestyle. Try these suggestions for brief walks and other ideas to spend less time sitting.

Benefits of Sitting Less

1.聽聽聽聽 Strengthens your heart. Sitting down slows your circulation and speeds up muscle loss, both of which take a toll on your heart.聽

On the other hand, physical activity helps to prevent heart disease and even reverses some risk factors.

馃憠馃憠馃憠The Power of Deep Breathing: What You Should Know

2.聽聽聽聽 Avoid illness. Prolonged sitting has also been associated with diabetes, cancer, and other conditions. A daily walk could mean fewer doctor visits and longer life. Stand, move around, stretch even in your chair.

3.聽聽聽聽Lose weight. Naturally, you burn more calories jogging than lounging on the couch. Think about how much better you look and feel when you stay trim. Plus, exercise is safer than crash diets that may not provide essential nutrients.

4.聽聽聽聽 Enhance your mood. Sitting affects your mind as well as your body. Boost your spirits with a gentle workout. You鈥檒l probably find yourself thinking more clearly too.

馃憠馃憠馃憠7 Practical Tips to dealing with Chronic Pain

Suggestions for Two-Minute Walking Breaks

1.聽聽聽聽聽 Break up tasks. Divide your assignments into 60-minute segments. That鈥檚 about as long as most adults can concentrate, so you may even increase the quality of your work.

2.聽聽聽聽 Create triggers. If you still tend to lose yourself in the flow, develop signals for when to stand up. Maybe you want to program an alarm on your computer, on a Fitbit or Apple watch, or time yourself according to your favorite radio news program. You can always use any strategy to make you remember!

3.聽聽聽聽聽 Engage in other light activities. Any gentle task can be substituted for walking. Tidy up the break room or do a few legs raises. If you鈥檙e at home, you could weed the garden or dance a few steps.

4.聽聽聽聽Talk with your boss. It may help to let your boss or coworkers know in advance why you鈥檙e changing your routine. They may want to join you,

Other Ways to Reduce the Risks of Prolonged Sitting

1.聽聽聽聽聽 Exercise regularly.There is no need to expound on the benefits of exercise.While a two-minute walk is a good start, there are advantages to additional exercise. More intense workouts will condition your cardiovascular system, thicken your bones, and sharpen your mind.

馃憠馃憠馃憠8 Top Tips To Exercise Safely

2.聽聽聽聽 Eat a balanced diet. Studies show that adults who sit more, snack more. Try drinking a glass of water or tea to curb your appetite.聽

Prepare healthy food you can nibble on anywhere, like yogurt or peanut butter on apple slices.

3.聽聽聽聽Stretch your hips and back. Sitting puts a lot of pressure on your spine and hips. Stand up and stretch every hour.

Just a few stretches you can do in your chair:

聽Forward trunk stretch. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 5 to 10 times or as able. Relieves a tight and tired back from prolonged sitting.
Upper spine stretch. Place both hands behind the neck, stretch backward against the back of a chair. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 5 to 10 times.
Forward and side stretch on Table or desk. Place hands on the desk. Slide hands forward to stretch your back. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 5 to 10 times or as needed.
SLide hands toward the left side, hold for 5 seconds. Then slide hands toward the right side for another 5 seconds. Repeat 5 to 10 times on each side or as desired until a good stretch for relief is achieved.

4.聽聽聽聽 Turn off the TV.At home,do you sit in front of the TV after sitting at your desk for eight hours? Visit the gym or go out with friends instead.

Hold onto your desk job while you take care of your body and mind. Strategic breaks and other healthy habits will help you live a longer and more active life.

馃憠馃憠馃憠4 Quick Fixes to Strengthen Your Back & Ease Pain

10 Top Tips: Ease Chronic Pain Without Medication

10 Top Tips: Ease Chronic Pain Without Medication

Chronic pain isn鈥檛 an easy condition to handle, but you can take control.聽

Simple changes in your lifestyle, diet, and exercise routines can help ease your pain. After all, you can be your own best physical therapist!聽

Try these techniques to experience relief:

1.聽聽聽聽聽Manage stress. Stress can increase chronic pain and make it more difficult to manage. Try a variety of strategies to relax and reduce stress to see which ones work the best for you.聽聽

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Yoga and meditation are two stress-reduction strategies that can help.

2.聽聽聽聽Try breathing exercises.

By simply focusing on your breathing, you can relax your muscles and reduce pain.

Deep breathing exercises can also reduce blood pressure, eliminate stress, and decrease heart rate. When you breathe in, breathe in through the nose and out through your mouth with a semi-pursed lip, slowly to allow better gas exchange in the lungs.

3.聽聽聽聽 Find fun distractions. Instead of concentrating on the pain, try distractions that help you forget about it.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Hobbies and activities such as watching your favorite movie or reading a new book can help. You may also want to try drawing or other ideas that help you fill your time and avoid thinking about the pain.

4.聽聽聽Increase your water intake. Dehydration can make chronic pain worse. 聽Have you tried coconut water? Choose the pure coconut water, not from concentrate, no sugar added kind. Many brands are available in the market. I know it’s an acquired taste but it is rich in natural electrolytes and potassium. Muscle cramps? Coconut water can help. You can find many different brands at your favorite grocery or health foods store.

5.聽聽聽聽 Avoid inflammatory food. Fast food and processed food can increase inflammation in your body, so your chronic pain also increases. Foods with a lot of sugar and salt also contribute to inflammation and increased pain.

6.聽聽聽聽聽 Add more anti-inflammatory food. On the other hand, nuts, leafy greens, fatty fish, berries, and other items can help you fight inflammation and reduce pain.They have antioxidants that fight damage on the cellular level.

7.聽聽聽聽聽 Focus on posture. Posture can help reduce the stress on your back and cut down on chronic pain.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Consider the way you sit and stand. Experts recommend that you avoid slumping your shoulders and lowering your head. The spine should be straight, so circulation is better.

8.聽聽聽聽聽 Discuss your health. Researchers have found that talking about your health can reduce pain. The American Psychological Association points out that talking about your pain can help you discover management techniques.

9.聽聽聽聽聽Try massage. Massages can reduce chronic pain by improving circulation and blood flow.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Massages help reduce back, shoulder, and neck pain. They can also help your overall health. Improved circulation, looser muscles, helps uplift your mood from the endorphins, the body’s natural pain killers, being stimulated.

Try using heat or cold packs over sore muscles and joints. See which one gets you the best relief.聽

TIP: Heat expands: meaning, more blood flow into the area due to blood vessels and the lymphatic system more open. COLD constricts, used mostly with acute bruising or injury. Ask your physical therapist which one to use best for your condition.

10. Find support. Health experts recommend finding support groups that focus on chronic pain. These groups give you the chance to meet others who suffer from chronic pain.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 They can offer advice and tips for managing pain. They can also provide doctor and clinic reviews or recommendations. By talking to others who have chronic pain, you can learn new techniques to deal with your pain.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Chronic pain is linked to anxiety and depression. The social aspect of support groups can also help in coping with these side effects.

聽聽聽聽聽聽聽聽 Support groups are less formal settings, and online groups offer privacy and anonymity, so you can feel comfortable sharing your experience.

Even if you take medication for your pain, you can further, reduce it with these techniques.

Follow your doctor鈥檚 advice, reduce stress and inflammation, and find support.

聽Life is worth living. And we do need to take charge if we want the pain relief we seek.

PREVENT Back Pain with these Simple Lifestyle Changes

PREVENT Back Pain with these Simple Lifestyle Changes

About four out of five Americans suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. It can take many forms. Lower back pain, however, is the most common. Fortunately, there are many simple lifestyle changes you can make to avoid an aching back.

Daytime Lifestyle Changes

1. Maintain a healthy body weight. Being overweight strains your back and disrupts your balance. Abdominal fat is especially problematic. Your midsection will usually slim down along with the rest of your body when you lose excess pounds.

smilesmilecoolTurn On Your Natural Fat-burning Machine!

2. Exercise regularly. Yoga is a great way to improve your posture and flexibility. It can also strengthen your muscles. Physical activity can help fight inflammation by increasing the flow of blood and nutrients to your spine.

3. Eat more calcium. Strong bones help protect you from osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a leading cause of back pain, especially for women. Eat your yogurt and leafy green vegetables like spinach or kale.

4. Follow safety guidelines at work. Back injuries are the most common type of workplace injuries. Talk with your employer about job design features that will keep you productive and safe.

5. Practice good posture. Make it a habit to press your lower abdomen against your spine. Keep your shoulders held back and relaxed. Hold your head up.

coolBack Pain Exercises Video

6. Sit correctly. Try to use an adjustable chair that will give you all the support you need. Prop a pillow against your lower back if needed. Keep your knees a little higher than your hips. Change positions or take a brief walk frequently.

7. Lift safely. Bend down at the knees and lift with your legs to avoid putting the whole load on your back. Carry heavy objects close to your body. Get help if an object is too heavy for you to lift alone.

8. Dress comfortably. Stiletto heels and heavy handbags can cause knee and back pain. So can overstuffing your pockets or wearing anything two sizes too small. Enjoy dressing up for special occasions but ensure your everyday wardrobe allows a full range of movement and your tote bag stays under 10 percent of your body weight.

Nighttime Lifestyle Changes

1. Select the right mattress for you. A moderately firm mattress usually works best. It adapts to the natural curves of your spine. If you have a firm mattress, an inch or two of padding on top may help.

2. Sleep on your side. Sleeping on your side with your knees slightly bent helps protect your back. Even better, put a small pillow between your knees to keep your hips aligned.

3. Sleep on your back. Sleeping on your back is also good. Place a small pillow under your knees to maintain the curve in your lower back.

4. Stop sleeping on your stomach. Lying on your stomach puts extra stress on your back. To break the habit, lie on your side and use pillows between your knees. This aligns your spine better. It relieves loading on your spine and supports your spine.

5. Avoid alcohol. You may fall asleep faster by drinking alcohol.聽 However, it impairs the quality of your sleep. You are likely to wake up with aches and pains. Some prescription medications may also interfere with sleep.

6. Apply heat. A heat pack is an easy and safe way to keep a little ache from growing into a big one. Get a hot water bottle or a heat pack that you can microwave. This can be applied to any sore spot . I do want to note that microwaveable heat pads do not retain heat long enough. You may end up going back to heat it up over and over. A commercial plug-in heat pad like this one is available on Amazon.

I refer my patients to Amazon, Walgreens, Target, or Walmart to get one. It is preferable to have one an automatic shut-off to ensure safety.

(I am not an affiliate of Amazon or the seller and do not receive compensation for this feature in my article.)

It is imperative to see a doctor if you feel any numbness or tingling. This is more so, if you experience severe or chronic pain.聽 These self-help techniques will give you effective relief and keep the pain from recurring.

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