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Posted by Bethaney Wallace on February 19, 2014
To anyone who has ever been down in the back, you know just how frustrating it can be to experience impromptu pain. Especially when there’s no specific cause or reasoning behind it. While there might be an old injury flaring up, oftentimes it’s simply repetitive movements (or a lack of the right movements) that adds to these recurring aches. No matter the cause, however, there are also very specific things you can avoid doing on a daily basis. Just by not doing things, you can do almost as much good as by doing the right things. By opting to steer clear of each act or movement, you can greatly reduce your chance at a painful back.
While it’s always a good idea to keep your doctor informed and stick to whatever treatment they best recommend, avoiding the following can only increase its effects. (And if you haven’t yet talked to a doctor, be sure to do so to make sure your pains aren’t warning signs of something more serious.)
Bending too often, especially bending the “wrong” way, can mean a strict increase in aches. Try to plan activities that won’t require plenty of things to be picked up off the floor. And if you’re a frequent dropper, consider a helper pole or handle grabber to ease the burden of frequent bending on your back.
If you must bend, squat at the knees and lean forward as little as possible. (Vs. leading at mid-back and reaching.)
Sit or Sleep on Sagging Surfaces
Avoid couches, chairs, or beds that sag at all costs. These pieces of too-worn furniture don’t offer enough support and cause excess pressure on the back. Specifically the lower back, where weight is re-located with gravity, pushing muscles and nerves into unnatural positions.
Obviously, picking up anything too weighty can be bad for the back muscles. Talk to your doctor about a maximum lifting weight, and when things must be moved, use the legs for power and support rather than bending. Some exercises may recommend regular (light) lifting to gain strength, but this should only be attempted with specific doctor request.
When pain occurs on a regular basis, many patients will look to a regular dose of over-the-counter pills, or even an outside substance, such as alcohol. Avoid these immediate fixes, which can only bring on more severe issues later on.
Chronic aches just might mean the onset of something more severe. Rather than assuming it will go on its own, talk to your doctor about the levels of pain, when they first started, and how often each bout takes place. Failing to focus on these issues can lead to an injury that grows continually worse over time.
Have a Friend or Relative Provide Treatment
No matter how “experienced” or how many times they’ve done this in the past, don’t let friends or family members treat you. Whether they want to massage or pop your bones back into place, it’s likely a bad idea. The only exception comes with those with actual medical experience. If actual training has taken place, don’t be afraid to seek their advice, even if you don’t accept their treatment.
What You’ve Always Done
Your current routine is obviously only contributing to pains; consider what could be causing added aches, and nix it from your life. This might be exercising, sleeping routines, a lack of movement throughout the day, and more. Whatever the cause, sticking to your current way of life will only build upon continual pains.
Look to more body-healthy habits for an easy way to avoid pains.