Long before I ever became a chiropractor I was fortunate enough to travel throughout much of the world. I have had the opportunity to mix and mingle with many different types of peoples and cultures and I found one common trait amongst all of them. Nobody likes back pain.
Sometimes back pain cannot be helped. No matter what you do or what treatments you undergo the pain remains. These cases are frustrating for healthcare providers and even more frustrating for the patient.
Sometimes however, back pain can be prevented and is actually caused by bad habits we have. In my years of treating patients as a chiropractor, a.k.a. back care specialist, I’ve noticed that by helping people change these bad habits they can keep back pain away for much longer times and sometimes even forever. This article will focus on some of those bad habits many people tend to have, which if changed can possibly eliminate back pain.
Sitting on your wallet is a no-no
If you stop sitting on your wallet you will have a lot better posture, your piriformis and gluteus muscles will be less likely to get inflamed, and pelvic torsion, which can cause back pain, will probably be reduced. If you must carry a wallet in the back pocket please remove it before you sit. A better option is thin out your wallet with unnecessary stuff and carry it in your front pocket.
Sitting without support
For most people in Western societies, sitting for extended periods of time at the computer at home, in front of the TV, or at work as a common occurrence. Sitting every day all day can easily shorten muscles like the hamstrings, which can cause back pain when they are shortened. Poor posture is also easily assumed while sitting for prolonged periods of time, and we all know what happens when we have poor posture, back pain! When the natural lumbar curve is reduced while sitting in the slouched position the muscles can easily become aggravated and inflamed. These swollen tissues easily cause back pain. Practice proper posture and add lumbar support to your chair so you can support those lower back muscles.
Think about foot orthotics
Chances are the shoes you wear every day are not properly molded to your foot. Everybody out there has a slightly different anatomical structure to their feet, but everyone buys basically the same type of shoe. An ill fitting shoe can cause unnecessary stress on the foot, knee, hips, and then the low back. By switching out your insoles and replacing them with customized foot orthotics you can relieve lots of the potential unnecessary stress is placed on the lower extremities and back. And ladies, while you’re at it ditch those high yields, they cause back pain! But you probably already knew that.
Trying to lose some weight
This is a very sensitive issue, and I know that being overweight is not a bad habit necessarily, but the extra weight on your body places a lot of unnecessary stress on your back. Find out what your ideal weight is for your height and try to be within about 10 pounds of it. While you’re working your way down to an ideal weight, `for every 5 pounds you shed you will see a significant weight lifted off your back.
Scott Larsen is an expert in back pain and a practicing chiropractor in San Jose California. www.thesanjosechiropractor.com