Back pain is something that just about every person will experience at some point, but if you are suffering from lingering back pain, it is important to discover the source and find real relief. This is especially true since back pain is one of the leading causes of disability.
We’re going to discuss some of the most surprising causes of back pain. Then we will look at a natural therapy that has brought hope to many back pain sufferers and may be just what you have been searching for.
How can poor nutrition be leading to back pain? There are actually a number of ways that diet affects the spine. For one thing, being overweight causes the spine to carry an extra load. Maintaining a healthy weight has been able to help some get rid of back pain for good. However, there are also a number of foods, such as highly processed fast foods, that can lead to inflammation and pain.
A Sedentary Lifestyle
The spine is supported by a number of muscles in the front, back, and even on the sides of the torso. Without use, these muscles atrophy. A sedentary lifestyle that doesn’t involve cardiovascular or strength building exercise can be a major factor in back pain severity. Even stretching can help ease sore joints, so don’t discount the benefits of exercise, even if you have to start light.
Sitting at an office all day in a slumped posture can certainly contribute to back pain. The spine is designed to support the body’s weight best when it is aligned properly. For this to be the case, the hip joints, shoulders, and ears should all be perfectly aligned vertically (include the ankles when you are standing up straight). Make an effort to maintain your posture. A posture corrector may help if you have to sit for long hours each day for work.
The Wrong Chair
If you do sit all day for work, the chair you sit in is an important element in fighting off back pain. Make sure there are plenty of adjustable components of the chair so you can set things like the height of the chair and the lumbar support to the proper levels. The best thing to do is to get up every hour or two to stretch and walk around a little.
If the soles of your shoes have worn out, or if you shopped for fashion instead of comfort, your shoes may be part of the reason for your back pain. Besides just plenty of cushion, look for shoes that provide the proper support for your arch. Without this, the way you walk may be altered, and that can throw off the alignment of your spine.
A Worn-Out Mattress
We spend a third of our lives sleeping, so the bed is not the place to try and cut costs. If your mattress is old and worn out, it is time to upgrade to a modern and comfortable mattress. Most people experience the least back pain when they use either a firm or a semi-firm mattress, although others swear by memory foam mattresses, so you will have to see what works for you.
Carrying the Wrong Bag
A bag that is too heavy, especially if the weight is carried on one shoulder, can distort posture while walking and lead to back strain. If you have to carry a lot of weight in your bag, you may want something that is more of a backpack style so you can distribute the weight evenly. If you have to use a shoulder bag, remember that the higher you carry the weight, the better, so don’t use a bag with a long strap unless you intend to carry it crossbody.
You can add one more reason to quit if you are a smoker and suffer from back pain. Even if you don’t suffer from back pain yet, smoking is leading you in that direction. Research shows that cigarette smoke reduces the amount of disc material between the vertebrae. According to one study, you have three times the risk of back pain if you are a smoker.
A Drug-Free Way to Kick Back Pain
People often try to deal with back pain with an over-the-counter pain reliever, but if you really want to get long-term relief, you need to go after the source of the pain. For many people, the source is the top two bones in the spine. That’s right – the neck can actually be the cause of back pain for many people.
When the atlas (C1) and axis (C2) are misaligned, this results in changes throughout the spine as the body tries to compensate in order to keep the head properly balanced. Where the greatest changes take place is where a person will generally feel the pain. This is why neck misalignments often lead to upper, middle, or even lower back pain.
Upper cervical chiropractors focus on just these top two bones of the spine using safe and precise adjustments. There is none of the twisting or cracking you may associate with chiropractic in general. Rather, exact measurements are taken, often using diagnostic imaging, to prepare a low force correction that is tailored to your specific misalignment.
To learn more, contact an upper cervical practitioner near you. You may find that the drug-free relief you have been searching for is closer than you think.