6 Alternative Approaches to Prevent Lower Back Pain

80% of people experience back pain at some point, making it the 5th most common reason for visiting the doctor.Back pain takes various forms, from a persistent dull ache to sudden sharp pain, and has many causes. It can stem from a disease or medical condition, many people develop back pain in part because they’re overweight or sedentary.The good news is that most lower back pain usually gets better within a few days or weeks, and surgery is rarely necessary. Here are 6 simple self-help strategies that can be surprisingly effective at preventing back pain and keeping it from returning:6 Alternative Approaches to Prevent Low Back Pain1. Get More ExerciseIf your back is hurting, you may think the best way to get relief is to limit exercise and to rest. A day or two of rest may help, but more than that may not help the pain. Experts now know that regular physical activity can help ease inflammation and muscle tension.2. Watch Your WeightExtra pounds, especially in your midsection, can make back pain worse by shifting your center of gravity and putting strain on your lower back. Staying within 10 pounds of your ideal weight may help control back pain.3. Sleeping PositionIf you’re prone to back pain, talk with your doctor about the best sleeping position. Sleeping on your side with your knees pulled up slightly toward your chest is sometimes suggested. With a pillow placed between your knees.Prefer to sleep on your back? Put one pillow under your knees and another under your lower back. Sleeping on your stomach can be especially hard on your back. If you can’t sleep any other way, place a MiracleBack Pillow under your abdomen to limit hyper-extension of low back4. Pay Attention to Your PostureThe best chair for preventing back pain is one with a straight back or low-back support. Keep your knees a bit higher than your hips while seated. Prop your feet on a stool if you need to. If you must stand for a prolonged period, keep your head up and your stomach pulled in. If possible, rest one foot on a stool — and switch feet every five to 15 minutes.5. Be Careful How You LiftDon’t bend over from the waist to lift heavy objects. Bend your knees and squat, pulling in your stomach muscles and holding the object close to your body as you stand up. Don’t twist your body while lifting. If you can, push rather than pull heavy objects. Pushing is easier on your back.6. If You Smoke, StopSmoking restricts the flow of nutrient-containing blood to spinal discs, so smokers are especially vulnerable to back pain. A number of allergy medications do the same. Restrict blood flow to the low back area.

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