According to the American Chiropractic Association, over 30 million Americans suffer from low-back pain at some point in their lives. Chronic back pain is the leading cause of disability in the world. Interestingly, the cause of low-back pain usually is not due to a serious condition, inflammation, or a fractured or broken bone. In fact, many cases of low-back pain are the result of poor posture or obesity.
Living with persistent low-back pain can be quite uncomfortable. However, there are a few proven ways to help back pain sufferers ease the pain, and live a healthier, more enjoyable life. If you suffer from back pain, try one or more of the 5 tip outlined below.
1. Practice Good Posture
One of the best ways to prevent back pain, as well as treat the pain once it starts, is by maintaining good posture. By keeping the spine in alignment while sitting and standing, this alleviates a lot of the pressure that would otherwise be placed on the muscles, joints, nerves, and ligaments. Research has shown that people who slouch are at a higher risk of developing chronic back pain than people who practice good posture techniques. Additionally, it has been proven that once a patient begins suffering from back pain, learning how to sit and stand correctly will ease the pain.
2. Stay Active
Staying active is essential to good overall health and wellness, so it’s not surprising that it will also help alleviate back pain. While many people may recommend work-out regimens like yoga to help treat and prevent back pain, other low-budget or free exercises can also help! Try taking a walk around your neighborhood every day to help ease your discomfort. The exercise, as well as practicing good posture, will help ease the tension in your lower back – not to mention it’s also great for your cardiovascular system.
3. Strengthen Your Core Muscles
Doctors, chiropractors, and physical therapists all agree that one of the primary causes of low back pain is simply due to weakened core muscles. If the muscles in your abdomen are weak, then other muscles in the body are forced to pick up the slack. Oftentimes, the muscles in the lower back are the primary ones to take over to allow you to continue standing, sitting, and walking. However, this puts a lot more unnecessary strain on this region. If you are experiencing back pain, try performing abdominal strength workouts to help strengthen those muscles to alleviate some of the strain in your lower back. Workouts such as crunches are designed for this purpose.
4. Stop Smoking
According to WebMD, putting down the nicotine-stick not only will reduce your risk of developing lung disease, but can also help to greatly improve back pain. Research has shown that smoking cigarettes causes the small blood vessels throughout the body to constrict. This leads to a decreased amount of blood reaching the soft tissues throughout your body, including the muscles in your back.
5. Get a Good Night’s Sleep
While we sleep, our bodies are still continually active; this is the time when our bodies heal themselves. This is why it is important to get plenty of sleep, as well as sleep correctly. Just like maintaining good posture during your waking-hours, there are a few things to keep in mind that your body needs in order for you to get a restful sleep.
- Back Sleepers – If you prefer sleeping on your back at night, try placing a pillow under your knees to help keep your spine in the correct alignment.
- Belly Sleepers – Sleeping on your stomach generally causes more harm than good. This sleeping position puts an incredible amount of stress and strain on a person’s head and neck, and because your head is generally slightly elevated, it also puts a lot of stress on your back. Try to refrain from sleeping in this position.
- Side Sleepers – For people who feel more comfortable falling asleep on their side, place a pillow between your knees to reduce the stress on your hips and lower back.
There are many reasons for the onset of back pain, however one of the most common causes is due to unintentional strain on the lower back. By following these tips, you can reduce, or even eliminate your low back pain.