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Back Pain & What to Do: Easy Ways to Protect Your Spine

Shopify API June 17, 2022 No Comments
Back pain is one of the most common physical complaints among Americans. Learn more about what causes it and what you can do to protect your spine.

back pain
June 2022. This article is independently written by Shelby Golding. All opinions given are hers. Shelby has been certified as a personal trainer and nutritional specialist since 2007. In 2008, she found her passion for writing about these topics and hasn't looked back.
back pain

As one of the most common physical complaints in the United States, back pain is challenging to diagnose. Symptoms vary from a constant ache to sharp pain and an inability to move. In addition, it may come on suddenly or over time.
Back pain is the second-most common reason why people go to their doctor. It's often related to occupational injury and tends to result in disability claims or missed hours at work. Your chances of developing back pain increase as you age since factors like disease and degeneration begin to take their toll on this all-important structural system.
The complexity of the structure and variety of factors contributing to your back pain makes it almost impossible to pinpoint why your back is hurting. Keep reading to learn more about the causes of back pain and what you can do to protect and relieve your spine.

Common Causes of Back Pain

Back pain is classified as either acute or chronic. Acute back pain suddenly comes on, and symptoms do not last more than a few weeks. Chronic back pain may come on fast or slow, but it lasts more than 12 weeks.
Some of the most common causes of back pain include:

1. Poor Posture

Gravity is a constant force holding us tight to the Earth, a necessary evil that makes it possible to live on an orb as it spins through space. However, it takes a toll on our spine. If you sit or stand incorrectly for long enough, gravity will eventually tire your muscles and cause imbalances from the neck and shoulders to the feet and toes.

2. A Sedentary Lifestyle

Sitting for long periods is harmful to your spine. The undue strain on the neck, shoulders, hips, and legs causes imbalances that trickle back to the spine. Your spine needs constant movement to stay flexible.

3. Repetitive Strain

Back pain is commonly caused by occupational stress or strain. About half of the working class suffers from back pain, which makes sense since the most common reason for seeking back pain relief is repetitively lifting or moving heavy objects.

4. Arthritis

Arthritis causes pain, swelling, and stiffness in the spine's joints. As we age, the gradual wear and tear on the joints in our spine can result in arthritis. Back pain caused by arthritis is considered chronic low back pain.

5. Osteoporosis

Back pain from osteoporosis tends to come on suddenly and causes a dramatic decline in quality of life. This is because the spine's bones become weaker and more brittle as time goes on. Osteoporosis back pain worsens the longer you stand and goes away when you lay down.

6. Obesity

Excess weight is especially harmful to the knees, pelvis, and back. Even having a few extra pounds puts more pressure on the lower body as it struggles to move the added weight. Obesity also causes an anterior pelvic tilt which further strains the low back.

 7. Psychological Conditions

Several studies have found a strong link between chronic low back pain and psychological conditions like anxiety, fear-avoidance, self-efficacy, catastrophizing, and depression. In particular, people with dysfunctional emotional processing and suppressed emotions often also have chronic low back pain.
The spine provides support and ensures healthy movement, and so it's heavily influenced by lifestyle and movement habits. Talk to your doctor if you are struggling to diagnose your back pain.

Protect Your Spine

Protect Your Spine

Whether you've suffered from back pain in the past or are simply trying to prevent it from becoming a problem in the future, learning how to protect your spine is an essential aspect of health and wellness.
A few recommendations for spine protection include:

1. Exercise

Building muscle and coordination with regular exercise helps to build a strong spine. Focus on activities that strengthen the back and the core, but do not neglect the rest of the body. A healthy body is all about balance! Consult with your doctor or a personal trainer for the best back exercises for your body.

2. Practice Good Posture (Sitting & Standing)

Begin to pay attention to the way you sit and stand. Sometimes the reasons for back pain are as simple as poor posture. For example, your spine has a natural S-curve, which may or may not be evident when looking at your body from the side.
You don't have to have perfect posture to prevent back pain, but you do need to be aware of your postural patterns, so you're not putting unnecessary pressure on the spine.
Don’t forget to practice proper posture while sitting at your desk too!

3. Stretch

Strength and flexibility are two sides of the same coin. Too much strength tightens muscles and increases pain in the joints. On the other hand, too much stretching can cause joint instability, hyperextension, and tears to tendons and ligaments.
Tension builds up in the body over time, causing tight muscles, pain, strain, and other musculoskeletal imbalances. You need both to protect yourself against back pain.

4. Don't Ignore the Warning Signs

Body awareness is more than recognizing pain when it becomes unbearable (although that is an important aspect!) Instead, you should try to develop an understanding that lets you identify the precursors to pain so you can nullify muscle tightness or tension before it becomes a problem.
Methods for developing body awareness include mind-body practices like yoga, tai chi, meditation, or mindfulness.

5. Eat an Anti-inflammatory Diet

Many of the causes of back pain (including arthritis, osteoporosis, obesity, and psychological conditions) are made worse by inflammation. One of the easiest ways to prevent inflammation from building in the body is to eat anti-inflammatory foods.
Fruits and vegetables, olive oil, fatty fish, nuts, and seeds are some of the most common anti-inflammatory foods you can eat to prevent chronic inflammation. These easy ways to protect your spine will prevent back pain and keep your spine healthy long-term.

Talk to Your Doctor if…

Back pain can result from severe issues, including spinal degeneration, injury, neuromuscular disorders, or life-threatening disease. Speak to your doctor if your back pain lasts longer than a few weeks, is severe, doesn't improve after resting, is accompanied by numbness, weakness, or tingling in your legs, or unexplained weight loss.
If you’re dealing with regular back pain, consider adding some traditional therapies to get yourself back on track. Popular options include physical therapy, spinal manipulations with a chiropractor, acupuncture, and heat/cold therapy.

And don’t forget your Kailo pain patch! A recent clinical study showed a significant decrease in musculoskeletal pain and issues such as back pain, neck pain, muscle pain, tendon pain, and many others. Simply apply Kailo near the site of pain and breathe a sigh of relief.
Disclaimer: Kailo should not be used if you have a pacemaker or if you are pregnant. Always consult your doctor or health care professional before using Kailo.


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