Is Your Back Out of Whack?

Over the years I have I battled back pain at different times. The last notable time was when I moved last summer. Back problems seem to be most debilitating because of their affect on our whole body. With that in mind I give you a few tips from an email I got over last week:

What causes back pain?
The most common causes of back pain are lifting, bending and overstretching. Many times the pain is acute, short lived, lasting a few days to a few weeks and usually caused by a muscle or ligament strain. However, if your pain lasts longer than three months, you should consult a doctor as you may have chronic back pain. Chronic pain or pain with unusual symptoms could be caused by a tumor, herniated disc, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis or other serious diseases and should be diagnosed by your doctor.
What can you do for the pain?
  • For the first couple of days after an injury or strain you should try to rest and make yourself as comfortable as possible. Lying on your side with a pillow between your knees is a good option just remember to get up and move around.
  • Choosing whether to apply heat or ice? While there isnt any strong evidence for either treatment, applying heat or ice for 15–20 minutes every 2–3 hours may help reduce your back pain. You can also try alternating between heat and ice to see what works best for you.
  • Try an over-the-counter pain medication. Anti-inflammatory drugs, acetaminophen, ibuprofen and naproxen can all provide pain relief.
  • Get back to your regular activities as soon as possible. Resting more than 12 days could make your pain worse by causing stiffness in your muscles. Your regular activities will help to keep your muscles strong.
What can you do to prevent it?
  • Your mom was right when she told you to sit up straight. Many people sit for long periods of time which can cause lower back pain. Be sure you sit up straight with your back against your chair and both feet on the floor.
  • Six packs are great when were talking about your abs! Doing exercises to strengthen your core body muscles provides protection for your back.
  • How heavy is your bag? If your bag or purse is more than 10% of your body weight, the best way to carry it is to wear it across your body like a messenger bag.
  • How are you sleeping? Keeping your spine in line with your head is one way to avoid back pain. Dont prop your pillows to a height that will cause your neck to be out of line with your spine.
Have you had back pains? Any advice for those who suffer with painful backs?

1 comment:

  1. Helpful info for the zillions of us out there that have back issues. (millions of the zillions probably read your blog!)


I love to get comments and usually respond. So come back to see my reply. You can click here to see my comment policy.