Back Pain: Causes, Myths, & What Will Make It Go Away, a guest post
Does your back hurt? You are not alone. The leading cause of disability globally is lower back pain, according to a study reported by the American Chiropractic Association. If you have a painful back, it’s not only hard physically, but can start to get you down mentally and emotionally. That’s the bad news.
The good news is that there are ways to get rid of the pain that works. You are not going to be disabled and in pain your entire life—you really can feel better.
Back pain can be caused by any number of reasons, like accidents, a hard fall, being overweight and bad posture. Lifting a box without bending your knees, vacuuming, sitting at a computer all day without good ergonomics, stretching to get something from the top shelf, and twisting while you’re doing it. Ironically, these are the biggest causes of most of the back pain we experience. Most everyday back pain is caused by doing everyday tasks incorrectly.
Maybe it’s because there are so many people with bad backs that there are so many myths about what causes back pain. When repeated enough, a myth is like a rumor, it becomes real.
Myth #1: If your back is hurting, you need to be in bed.
With the exception of a severe car or sports injury, this could no further from the truth. Being in bed is the last thing you want to do to try to alleviate back pain. Your doctor may prescribe a couple of days of rest to make sure you don’t cause any more damage to your back, but this is more of a safety precaution. If you stay in bed, your muscles will weaken, stiffen up, and you may very well be in more pain when you get up and try moving around again.
Myth #2: Any exercise causes back pain.
Let’s be serious, if you do back-straining strenuous exercise workouts, then this is a true statement. Good back exercises are very beneficial and necessary for optimal back health. If you do not exercise, your spine will weaken. Swimming, yoga, and light walking will help strengthen your back. Depending on the cause of your back pain, the exercise regimen will vary. Talk to your doctor about what kinds of exercises would be good for you.
Myth #3: When you get older, your back will automatically start to hurt and will stay that way.
Not true. The aging process only increases the number of things you can do that won’t hurt your back. There are many ways to make sure your back is and always will be pain-free as you get older, just talk to your doctor or specialist about the ones that are best for you.
Exercising & Stretching
These are the two most important things for back pain that, if done right, will alleviate or prevent back pain, once and for all. The following will give you an idea of what you can and can’t do for your back. Always check with your doctor before attempting any exercise. Some exercises may not be appropriate for your specific condition.
Aerobic exercises are good for you, and swimming is one of the best. Water provides support and helps blood circulation and any low-impact exercise when done in water is always good for you. To relax and get in a little aerobic activity, consider doing light movements to ease muscle tension while in the hot tub. Keep your spa running efficiently with the proper filters and accessories to ensure that water temperatures remain safe and the chlorine levels are appropriate for use.
There is aerobics you can do that will hurt more than help. When you jog or run, you jar your body (especially on hard surfaces) and this obviously includes your spine. Any high-impact aerobics will be harsh on your back, thereby bringing back the pain you’re trying to get rid of. Try easier aerobic exercises instead, such as stationary bicycling or easy walking.
Yoga is one of the best back pain relievers ever. Your spine and abdomen muscle area combine and work as a necessary part of spinal muscular health. Yoga helps tighten the muscles in those areas.
Your back may hurt because of physical causes, but stress, anxiety, or any emotional tension can cause back pain, as well. Yoga provides stretching and relaxation poses that promote flexibility in certain joints that will help your back.
By doing yoga, you learn a methodical way to breathe which helps the oxygen flow to your brain and unite your body and mind by relaxation of both. Coupled with meditation, yoga can be a highly effective back pain reliever.
It is essential for you to do good stretching if you want your back to get better. When your back tightens, you can stretch to loosen the muscles and relieve the pain. There are daily stretching routines that you can follow, again, ask your doctor. Using a foam roller is a great way to stretch out your back. It not only loosens your muscles, but you learn better coordination.
Exercise, stretching, and meditation are guaranteed ways to get rid of that pain in your back. All you have to do change a few habits. Just knowing you’re going to get better makes getting up in the morning a little easier, even if your back is still a little sore.