12 Tips to Keep a Healthy, Pain-Free Back
By Savanna Stone //
Back pain is the worst. It causes you to yell out when you try to stand, scream when you try to walk, and cry when you try to run. Because you have this pain, you might depend on painkillers, you might have anxiety, or you might just despise every moment of every day. Even though it hurts, the best things you can do for your back are to move, stretch, and strengthen your back. Here are some tips and tricks to help reduce your back pain:
1. Stretch. Stretch whenever you can. Take breaks at work to get up from your desk and stretch. Take breaks from watching TV to get up and relieve your muscles of stiffness. Before and after you exercise, stretch your muscles to reduce stiffness and relieve your pain.
2. Do yoga or pilates. These exercises both strengthen and stretch your back muscles to relieve the strain of your tight back muscles.
3. Focus on your posture. Slouching can cause your muscles to tighten, and tight muscles are what cause pain. Use Chirp’s Upper Back Posture Corrector to keep your posture up to par. Also use the Chirp Wheel+ to correct your posture and reduce muscle tension.
4. Balance. When you’re standing, try to balance your weight on both feet, rather than the hand-on-the-hip and hip out sassy-girl stance you’re used to.
5. Adjust your chair height. At work and home, adjust your chair so that you don’t have to slouch down or reach up for your desk.
6. Focus on lumbar support. Wherever you sit, make sure you have good lumbar support. You can help support your lower back by placing a rolled-up towel or pillow behind the small of your back or use Chirp’s Lower Back Posture Corrector.
7. Elevate your feet. If you must sit for a long time, elevate your feet. If you don’t have a stool for your feet, use a pile of books or a co-worker’s chair—they won’t mind.
8. Ditch the high heels. Flat shoes will keep your spine straight and happy. High heels make you have poor posture, and poor posture causes your back pain.
9. Sleep like a baby in the womb. Sleeping on your side in the fetal position relieves pressure around the spine by opening up the joints in the spine.
10. Lift correctly. Before lifting anything, bend your knees, puff out your chest, pull in your stomach muscles, and put your shoulders back. When lifting, keep your head in line with your back and keep the object close to your body. Never twist while lifting, to help avoid injury.
11. Maintain a healthy diet to prevent weight gain. Extra pounds around the waist can strain your lower back muscles. Eat a diet full of calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D. These vitamins help keep your bones strong.
12. Quit smoking. When you smoke, less blood reaches your lower spine, which contributes to spinal disc degeneration. Smoking also puts you at risk for osteoporosis and slows healing. Even coughing due to heavy smoking can increase back pain.
Utilize these tips and tricks before back pain comes. Help back pain stay away.