Back pain can affect people of any age, for different reasons. Lower back pain may be linked to the bony lumbar spine, discs between the vertebrae, ligaments around the spine and discs, spinal cord and nerves, lower back muscles, abdominal and pelvic internal organs, and the skin around the lumbar area.
Back pain can be the result of trauma, such as a fall or a car accident. But most often back pain is the result of an everyday activity done incorrectly — activities as common as twisting to reach or lift an object, sitting at a computer in the same position for hours, bending over to vacuum, and carrying shopping bags. The good news is that back pain prevention isn’t all that difficult, often requiring just a few adjustments that will soon become second nature.
Sometimes, back pain can be straightforward to figure out. If you were moving boxes and you feel a sudden ache in your back, it’s not hard to assume you’ve clicked a muscle or overworked yourself. You can expect it to be better in a few days. But when back pain turns chronic, you really need to think about some of your daily habits – and what might be causing your pain.
Back pain can be debilitating and scary. Many people think it’s a sign of something much more serious, like arthritis. It doesn’t necessarily have to be something frightening. However, there are habits you can change in your day-to-day life that will make coping with your back pain much easier. Try to eliminate those these unhealthy practices from your routine and you’ll see the change in your back pain almost straightaway.
Here are 6 different ways to prevent back pain that usually people Ignore.
1. Stop wearing clothes that are way too tight for you.
Possibly brought on by the renaissance of skinny jeans, many people wear trousers way too tight for them. Whether it’s from a need to feel thinner, or for fashion, one thing is indisputable: it’s bad for your back. When an outfit’s too tight, it constricts your body and adds strain not just to your back but also to your neck, shoulders and joints. Apart from skinny jeans, the other main culprit in this are pencil skirts. People seem to think that tight clothes look more formal. In fact, they can be really bad for you. A good rule of thumb is trying to slip a finger between your waist and the waistband of the trousers or the skirt. If you can, the fit is good for you. Also, make sure you buy clothes made with stretchy, breathable materials.
2. Stop Smoking.
With the increased awareness of public health and smoking, you’d probably find it surprising that so many people still choose to reach for a cigarette. Apart from all the other unpleasant problems that smoking brings about – like the increased risk of lung cancer, impotence, and infertility – smokers are also more likely than non-smokers to get back pain. Because smoking slows down circulation, this damages sensitive tissues in the body, such as the joints and the tissues in the lower back. It also decreases the flow of essential nutrients to your muscles.
3. Take a walk every now and again.
Inactivity is one of the biggest causes of back pain that everyone seems to ignore. With a multitude of desk jobs now prevalent, we barely realize we’re spending eight to ten hours of our day in the same position. Sitting, looking at a computer. Always try and get up and do some stretches when you have long days at work. The glutes, hamstrings and Achilles muscles are the most important ones, as they give you the support you need. Without them, you’ll definitely feel the strain on your back. Make sure you adopt the correct posture when you’re sitting as well. Don’t slouch. Keep your back straight. It’s those everyday things that make all the difference.
4. Try to reduce stress in your life.
We often underestimate the physical consequences of stress in our lives. Stress can cause physical pain we’re not aware of, because it tenses our muscles and it leads to different spasms and aches. Whenever you can, try to practice positive thinking, as that makes your body relax and slow down. Relaxation techniques such as meditation, mindfulness, and deep breathing also work towards relaxing your muscles. You might not think that your mental health is causing your back pain, but you can be very wrong. Stress is detrimental to muscles. The more you work towards reducing it, the better your quality of life will be.
5. Stop wearing too high heels.
As women, we feel the constant pressure to look perfect and model-ready for everyone. However, high heels are very detrimental to a woman’s posture, and joint and muscle health. Scientists have proven that overly high heels throw off your center of gravity, making it more difficult to keep a good balance. To walk in high heels, you often have to lean forward, which puts a lot of pressure on your feet and calf muscles. This in turn strains the muscles in your back. A lot of chronic hip and back pain in women is caused by wearing heels – and it’s perfectly avoidable. If your job requires you to wear very high heels, invest in comfortable shoes for the commute and change once you get to the office. That single change can make a difference!
6. Sleep sideways.
You don’t want to sleep flat on your back. The best position for sleeping is on your side. If you must sleep on your stomach, put a pillow under your lower abdomen to help take stress off your back. Having a supportive mattress and pillow for your head are vital as well. “Getting enough, restful sleep is always an important part of maintaining good health,” Lustig says. Also, if you exercise during the day, you sleep better at night.