If you’ve ever tweaked your back for a few days of discomfort or suffered long-term back pain, you know backaches also make it tough to concentrate, sleep and exercise (which just doesn’t seem fair since one of the best ways to prevent back pain is to work out).
As many as 90 percent of Americans suffer from back pain at some point in their lives. Back pain is a symptom, not a diagnosis itself. As with other pain, you should see your physician to find the cause of your backaches and get treatment guidance. You may have issues with the disks in your back, a spine injury as minor as a ligament tear or as major as a fractured vertebrae, or an acquired condition like scoliosis or arthritis.
Your doctor may recommend certain exercises to keep your back healthy, depending on your back’s condition. These may include flexion exercises, extension exercises, stretches and aerobic exercise.
Beyond exercise, here are some other tips to care for your back:
- Eat right to lose or maintain a healthy weight, which helps you avoid putting unnecessary stress and strain on your back.
- Get enough calcium and Vitamin D every day to help prevent osteoporosis. Talk to your doctor about how much you need per day and how to get it, which may include multivitamins.
- Stretch out before and after exercise.
- Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes.
- Avoid smoking.
Care for your spine with these tips, and if you do have backaches, see your health care provider to help beat back pain.