How To Maintain A Healthy Spine
Today’s society is full of factors which, if ignored, can place too much pressure on the spine; resulting in bad posture and daily pain. Sitting all day, spending too much time hunched over our phone, smoking and even dietary preference can have an impact on our spinal health. It’s estimated that neck pain resulting from these factors cause 20% of Australian adults with a disability to suffer from their condition. Implementing positive spinal health habits, including: good posture, sleep hygiene and partaking in regular stretching and exercise regimes as a preventative measure is important in preventing neck pain. In this blog post we discuss spinal health: specifically, how to maintain a healthy spine.
What Causes Back and Neck Pain?
When facet joints located between the vertebrae in our spine become inflamed or degraded, this results in pain in the back and neck. By age 60, 90% of people are affected by either an inflamed or degraded spine. The associated pain is often hard to cope with and its impact frequently causes people to become more sedentary and experience difficulty performing their job and maintaining a high quality of life. Long-term pain also has a negative impact on mental health. Most typically, back and neck pain results from muscle strain, weakness and lack of tone and conditioning due to inactivity, or from overuse or over-exertion. However, the good news is that people suffering from back or neck pain can often alleviate their symptoms by participating in a targeted therapy routine.
Ten Tips To Improve Spinal Health
1. Stretch and Strengthen the Back
Treatment for spinal conditions often involves a targeted routine of stretching and strengthening the back muscles.
2. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Excess weight places unnecessary pressure on the spine and often results in compounding health conditions which further impair the spine or make existing conditions worse.
3. Quit Smoking
Smoking tightens blood vessels which reduces blood flow and limits oxygen flow to the spine. This can speed up naturally-occurring spinal inflammation and degradation.
4. Reduce Consumption of Inflammatory Foods
Dairy, red meat, sugar and other processed foods are all known to cause inflammatory problems within the body. Plant-based foods are a better option for you if you suffer from a spinal condition and can help with weight loss.
5. Be Careful When Lifting Heavy Objects
When lifting heavy objects, lift with your legs, not your back. Also, keep your back straight.
6. Stay In Motion
Staying in a sedentary position for an extended time places undue pressure on the spine. If you must sit for long periods, for example, at work, take breaks as often as you can. Walk around and stretch to keep your back in prime condition.
7. Stand Whenever Possible
Standing is far more effective than sitting at maintaining a neutral spinal alignment. A stand-up desk or workout ball is a far better alternative to an office chair in this regard, as these options engage the core which is useful for maintaining good spinal health.
8. Try Yoga
Yoga is a highly beneficial activity that can both strengthen and stretch muscles. Beginners should start slow to avoid aggravating any possible existing conditions with the back or neck.
9. Try Swimming
Water therapy can play a very helpful role in alleviating back issues, especially for older patients or those who experience severe discomfort with a land-based approach. Water exercise can be an effective way to build strength and confidence, and pave the way for eventual land therapy.
10. Seek Professional Treatment
If you have followed the steps above and are still suffering from pain in the neck or back, it is best to consult a professional chiropractor like Willetton Chiro. A professional chiropractor will use hands-on techniques to identify any issues with your spine and can use a mixture of different therapies and exercise routines to treat your condition.
Seeking Pain Relief? Visit Willetton Chiropractic Today
Experiencing frequent pain in the bones, muscles or joints is not normal. Willetton Chiropractic are passionate about helping clients to live healthier, pain-free lives. Book an appointment today to discover how chiropractic care may be able to help you.