8 Ways to Prevent Back Pain

While it may seem inevitable that most Americans will experience some sort of back pain throughout their lifetime, understanding your spine can prevent your back pain from becoming a growing problem. The following are a few tips provided by the National Institutes of Health to keep your back healthy and avoid back pain:

Stretch before you exercise and stay active.

Keep an equal amount of weight on both feet and be mindful of your posture when you are standing or sitting.

Find a chair that supports your lower back. When sitting, make sure the chair at a comfortable height so you can reach the desk without having to slouch or reach.

Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes if you need to stand for a long time or walk frequently.

Don’t try to lift objects too heavy for you. If you are lifting a large object, use your knees, pull in your stomach muscles, and keep your head down and in line with your straight back.

Eat healthy and maintain a normal weight. Excessive weight, especially around the waistline, can put pressure on your lower back muscles.

Quit smoking. Smoking reduces blood flow to the lower spine and causes the spinal discs to degenerate.

4 Ways to Mange Flare-Ups

Remain active (go to work as long as doesn’t make pain worse, do regular activities that strengthen and stretch, light exercise like walking, biking, swimming – nothing that involves twisting or bending, nothing that makes pain worse). Over-the-counter pain meds (take round the clock for 3 to 5 days, don’t wait till you can no longer stand the pain). Try heat wraps. If not getting better, talk to your doctor.

For more information on back pain, check out the NIH fact sheet on back pain HERE.

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