The 21st century is a world obsessed with health and body conscience. Medical advice is at our fingertips and we are being constantly reminded of the importance of taking care of our bodies.
However, there is one particular complaint that we often neglect to seek advice or treatment for. Annually, back pain affects half of the population and statistics show that a quarter of women and a third of men over 65 suffer with a more severe, prolonged pain. The high statistics suggest that not enough of us are seeking help for our problem!
The back needs to be flexible as well as strong enough to support our body. It is well worth looking after it properly. Simply tackling back pain with pain relief is often only a short term solution. It is usually well worth actually doing something about it.
You could see a professional directly or first of all just try some of the some self help advice on this site. Either way it seems better to look after your back rather than just ignore the warning signs. After all there is no such thing as a replacement spine - it is with you for life.
More and more people are choosing the chiropractic approach because chiropractors tend to focus on the cause of the problem itself rather than just numbing the symptoms.
Feel free to use the self help avice below or contact either myself or my clinic
01 - Keep Moving
Keep Moving - Keep yourself fit and active. This will help to maintain your spinal strength and mobility as well as speed up your recovery from episodes of back pain! Why not try a 10-20 minute walk? Swimming is also a rewarding option, however avoid breast stroke if you can.
02 - Lift Carefully
Lift Carefully - Take care when lifting heavy objects. Bend your knees, keep your back straight and don't twist your body. Don't lift and twist at the same time. Most importantly, hold your tummy in tight and keep the object close to you, safest for both you and whatever you may be lifting.
03 - Sit and Stand Correctly
Sit and Stand Correctly - Good posture helps to keep back pain at bay! When sitting, try to keep your lower back supported. If your chair does not have any inbuilt support, then use a rolled up towel. Keep your feet flat on the floor, with your hips slightly higher than your knees. Try not to curl your legs up underneath you, no matter how tempting! Put equal weight on both legs when standing to help prevent pelvic joint problems.
04 - Invest in a Nice Bed
Invest in a Nice Bed - A hard, firm mattress isn't necessarily always a good thing. Make sure your mattress is firm enough to support your back, but allows your hips and shoulders to sink in slightly. Most importantly, you should feel comfortable whilst in bed and when you wake up in the morning. If you are not, it is worth considering investing in a new mattress. Remember, orthopaedic labels and price not always a guide that the mattress will work for you. Ask your chiropractor for personalised advice.
05 - Sleep Comfortably
Sleep Comfortably - Sleeping on your back is best. If you have to sleep on your side then put a pillow between your knees and try not to twist into the recovery position. Never sleep on your front because it twists your neck and lower back.
06 - Get a Good Start to the Day
Get a Good Start to the Day - When you awake, pull your knees into your chest to stretch the hips. This wakes up the lower back and relieves stiff joints. For some more advice on practical posture exercises, please visit Straighten Up UK
07 - Warm Up
Warm Up - Do some light stretching before and after activity, including things such as gardening and clearing up. This will help to make sure your muscles are warmed up and cooled off properly.
08 - Chill Out
Chill Out - If you do find yourself nursing a muscle or joint ache, use an ice pack for ten minute intervals with a twenty minute break in between. Make sure the ice is wrapped up to prevent getting an ice burn. If you think you have a fracture, avoid doing this and seek medical attention.
09 - De-Stress
De-stress - Stress often leads to muscle tension. The best ways to reduce stress are by getting plenty of exercise, eating healthily and getting enough sleep. Massage can be especially helpful in reducing muscular tension as well as being relaxing! At Lushington Chiropractic we have a range of massage therapists that can help to remove tension. Ask your chiropractor for his/her recommendation.
10 - Listen To Your Body
Listen to your body - Pain is a warning sign. If something is hurting you, stop doing it! Carrying on through the pain is a bad idea. Get someone to help you instead of pushing your body too far.
And finally, visit a chiropractor. We are experts in muscle, joint and nerve problems, not just neck and back pain. At Lushington Chiropractic, we provide a very professional service of care and are happy to listen to your individual case and start treatment tailored specifically to the cause of your back pain. We have tried to make sure these tips are suitable for most people but remember, if any of them are not working for you, then stop doing them and seek advice.