At Prairie Spine and Pain Institute, our team will work to provide you with a comprehensive evaluation and an outcome that improves your quality of life. Physician Assistant Andrew Kitterman gives patients the following tips to avoid back pain.
Low back pain is a common workplace health problem and one of the most common causes of disability worldwide. While back pain is inevitable, there are certain measures that you can take to prevent low back pain.
If possible, avoid heavy lifting altogether. If you are required to lift something heavy remember to use proper technique by using legs and not your back. It is important to keep you back straight and bend at the knees to reduce the load across the back.
Exercise and weight loss
Practicing back and abdominal muscle exercises can help strengthen your core as well as improve range of motion. The core muscles can help to stabilize the spine and prevent back injury. Excess weight can also contribute to back muscle strains by putting undue stress across the muscles of the low back. Maintaining a healthy weight can have several health benefits, including prevention of back injury.
Be cognizant of your posture at all times while sitting or standing. While sitting, make sure you have sufficient low back support and armrests. While standing try not to slouch. Changing positions every 30 minutes can help reduce prolonged stress across the muscles of the low back.
Along with other major health problems, smoking can also contribute to back pain. Nicotine can reduce blood flow to the discs between your vertebral bodies thus depriving them of required nutrients, also slowing the healing process.
Avoid high heels
Wearing comfortable shoes with a low heel can prevent back pain especially during long periods of standing. Current recommendations are for shoes with less than a 1 inch heel.
Drink more water
Between every vertebrae is a disc that helps to support the vertebrae of the spine and to absorb shock during activities. When you are dehydrated the core of the disc loses some of its ability to absorb shock. By drinking water you keep your intervertebral discs hydrated which can reduce the likelihood of future back pain.
Calcium and Vitamin D intake
Calcium and Vitamin D are very important for bone health and the prevention of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis causes the bones to become fragile and brittle and increases the likelihood of fracture. Spine fractures secondary to osteoporosis are a leading cause of back pain, especially in the aging population.