Back injuries are among the most common types of injuries that people experience, and they can be both painful and debilitating. As a Chiropractor we see way more than our fair share of these kinds of issues and for the most part we can get people sorted out and back to normal pretty quickly. The only thing better than dealing with a back injury, though, is avoiding it!
Back injuries, especially lower back injuries are so common we often don’t even take them seriously. As spinal specialists, it makes chiropractors cringe when people say that back pain is “part of life”, “just part of getting older” or “something you have to live with”. None of these are true!
In many cases, these injuries are caused by poor posture, incorrect lifting techniques, or overuse of the muscles in the back. While many of these causes are parts of life we cant totally avoid, there are many things that you can do to avoid back injuries and keep your back healthy and strong. Here are some tips to help you keep your back in good shape.
Maintain Good Posture
Good posture is essential for maintaining a healthy back. When you stand or sit with good posture, your spine is in its natural alignment, and your back muscles are working properly. To maintain good posture, keep your shoulders back, chest lifted, and spine straight. If you sit for extended periods of time, use a chair with good lumbar support and keep your feet flat on the floor.
Stretching is a great way to keep your back muscles flexible and strong. Regular stretching can help to prevent back injuries by improving your range of motion and reducing muscle tension. Try to incorporate stretching into your daily routine, especially before and after exercise. Some good stretches for your back include the seated spinal twist, the standing hamstring stretch, and the knee-to-chest stretch.
Exercise is another important way to keep your back healthy and strong. Regular exercise can help to strengthen the muscles in your back and improve your overall fitness level. Try to incorporate a variety of exercises into your routine, including strength training, cardio, and flexibility exercises. Some good exercises for your back include swimming, yoga, and weight lifting.
Use Proper Lifting Techniques
Improper lifting techniques are a leading cause of back injuries. When lifting heavy objects, it’s important to use proper technique to avoid injury. Start by standing close to the object you want to lift, and bend at the knees and hips, not at the waist. Keep your back straight and use your leg muscles to lift the object, rather than your back muscles. Avoid twisting your back while lifting, and always ask for help if you need it.
Wear Supportive Shoes
Wearing supportive shoes can also help to prevent back injuries. Shoes with good arch support can help to distribute your weight evenly and reduce pressure on your back muscles. Avoid wearing high heels or shoes with flat soles, as these can put extra strain on your back muscles.
Take Breaks When Sitting for Long Periods of Time
Sitting for long periods of time can put a lot of pressure on your back muscles, leading to pain and discomfort. If you sit for extended periods of time, make sure to take breaks to stretch and move around. Stand up and stretch every 30 minutes, or take a short walk around the office to get your blood flowing.
Maintain a Healthy Weight
Maintaining a healthy weight is also important for keeping your back healthy. Extra weight puts extra strain on your back muscles and can lead to back pain and injury. Try to maintain a healthy weight by eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise.
Seek Treatment for Back Pain
If you experience back pain, it’s important to seek treatment right away. Ignoring back pain can lead to more serious injuries down the line. Talk to your Doctor or Chiropractor about your symptoms and ask for advice on treatment options. Physical therapy, chiropractic care, and massage therapy are all effective treatments for back pain. You don’t have to live with it!
Need help with back pain?
Back injuries can be painful and debilitating, but they are also preventable. By maintaining good postural hygiene, lifting and exercising carefully as well as using specialists such as Chiropractor to deal with issues before they become painful injuries you can avoid many back-related issues!