People have definitely increased their health awareness inthe last couple of years, which is great! We now watch what we eat, drink, what we put in our bodies and have beenincreasing the amount of Doctor questioning! At Doroski Chiropractic Neurology in the Woodbridge, Dale City Virginiaarea I love when a patient says but why. That gives me an opportunity to educate them even more and it shows theyare listening. Patients no longer go totheir Doctors like sheep. Here are somegeneral tips for a health spine.
A healthy spine is an often overlooked and essential part ofa healthy lifestyle. People who suffer from back pain, particularly if it islong-term, are generally less healthy than those who do not. In fact, back paincosts are staggering not only financially, but also in terms of lost time fromwork and because of psychosocial problems that arise during the healing processassociated with long-term back pain.
Unfortunately, approximately 80-90% of the populationsuffers from spinal pain at some point. People who are overweight or obese, andwho smoke, lift heavy objects, or had a previous episode of back pain, are morelikely to experience back pain.
Because so many people suffer from spine pain, it’simportant for you to try to keep your spine as healthy as possible. Followingsimple posture, lifting, and healthy lifestyle guidelines can help you keepyour back in good shape.
The American Chiropractic Association recommends thefollowing spinal health tips:
When standing, keep one foot slightly in front of the other,with your knees slightly bent. This position helps to take the pressure offyour low back.
Do not stand bent forward at the waist for prolonged periodsof time. The muscles in your low back become deconditioned in this position,which may lead to pain.
At all times, avoid twisting while lifting. Twisting is oneof the most dangerous movements for your spine, especially while lifting.
If the item is too heavy to lift, pushing it is easier onyour back than pulling it. Whenever possible, use your legs, not your back orupper body, to push the item.
If you must lift a heavy item, get someone to help you.
Keep your knees slightly higher than your hips, with yourhead up and back straight.
Avoid rolling your shoulders forward (slouching).
Try to maintain the natural curve in your low back.
Reaching and Bending
When reaching for something above shoulder level, stand on astool. Straining to reach such objects may not only hurt your mid-back andneck, but it can also bring on shoulder problems.
Do NOT bend over at the waist to pick up items from thefloor or a table.
Instead, kneel down on one knee, as close as possible to theitem you are lifting, with the other foot flat on the floor and pick the itemup.
Or bend at the knees, keep the item close to your body, andlift with your legs, not your back.
When carrying objects, particularly if they are heavy, keepthem as close to your body as possible.
Carrying two small objects—one in each hand—is often easierto handle than one large one.
Healthy Diet and Exercise
While the proverbial jury is still out, we suspect thatextra weight puts undue strain on your spine.
Keep within 10 lbs. of your idealweight for a healthier back.
“Beer belly” is likely the worst culprit, as it putsunwanted pressure on the muscles, ligaments and tendons in your low back.
The most efficient and effective way to reduce weight is byeating a sensible diet and exercising regularly.
Consult with your doctor before beginning any exerciseprogram, particularly if you have a health condition.
Sleeping on your back puts approximately 50 pounds ofpressure on your spine. Other positions may be better.
Placing a pillow under your knees while lying on your backcuts the pressure on your spine roughly in half.
Lying on your side with a pillow between your knees may alsoreduce the pressure on your back.
Never sleep in a position that causes a portion of yourspine to hurt. Most often, your body will tell you what position is best.
Smokers have more spine pain than nonsmokers, and they alsoheal more slowly when they have an episode of back pain because the chemicalsin tobacco smoke restrict the flow of blood to the tissues in and around yourspine.
While following these instructions is no guarantee thatyou’ll be free from back pain for your entire life, it can certainly reduceyour risk of developing it. These simple steps will help you keep your spine ingood shape, making you a healthier, happier person.
3122 Golansky Blvd, Ste 102
Woodbridge VA 22192
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