Back pain is one of the leading causes of doctor visits. In fact, statistics show that everyone will experience some type of back pain during their lifetime.
It’s no wonder that we suffer so much, with all that we put our poor bodies. Studies show this constant strain can put us at a higher risk for back problems.
Sometimes the back pain is caused from something as simple as sleeping the wrong way, overworking the back, stress, fatigue, lifting something that’s too heavy, or perhaps we twisted the wrong way.
Some find if they sit immobile for too long, their back will become stiff and sore while others suffer from back pain because of a disease, or treatment.
Can poor posture cause us to have back trouble? If so, what are some things we can do to prevent this from happening and how can we treat it? I will answer these questions and more in the following paragraphs.
Your Back and its Functions
Your back consists of vertebrae, which are numerous little tiny bones that make up the spinal column and supports the entire upper half of your body. These vertebrae’s are broken down into three groups they are the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar.
The cervical vertebra is the top seven bones they help your body with neck support. The thoracic is twelve bones follow the cervical. They connect to your ribs. Lastly is the lumbar.
These five are the largest of the vertebrae. They are responsible for maintaining the body’s weight and the stress you place on your body.
Each of the vertebrae is separated by disks. These small cartilages stop the vertebrae from rubbing against each other.
They are made up of a jelly inside known as the nucleus pulposus and a hardring that runs along the edge known as the annulus. These disks are made mostly of water, and have little blood supply of their own, so their nutrition comes from surrounding blood vessels
Each one of the vertebra has what is known as a processes. These processes connect and lock to form a facet.The spinous and transverse process attaches to the back muscles which allows the spine to move.
The vertebraestacks on top of each other, down the length of the spine to cover an arch shaped opening. Thisformation also surrounds and protects the spinal cord.
The spinal cord connects the brains to the rest of the body. It houses the body’s nerve endings. These nerves go from the spinal canal to other parts of the body through tiny openings. When these nerves become pinched different types of painful disorders might occur.
Sit up Straight
How many times have we been told to sit up straight, don’t slouch? Personally I couldn’t count them all. For me it just felt uncomfortable to sit that way.
Research shows that slouching increasing pressure on our muscles and it causes our body to be thrown out of alignment.
So stand up straight and when you sit, sit all the way back in the chair, with your feet planted on the floor. You can use pillows against the back of the chair for extra back support.
Besides using good posture, it’s important for us to do proper exercises to strengthen our back muscles. This will help with body alignment, and prevent improper movements.
Should I lift it on my Own?
Lifting incorrectly can cause muscles to spasms. In fact, people who do a lot of lifting are at a higher risk for back disorders. So how should you lift something properly? I will explain.
First you need to look at the object you’re attempting to pick up. Ask yourself if you can manage this safely. If you are unsure, try lifting one edge to see. If you’re still unsure, ask for help.
If you believe you can pick it up make sure you have a clear walk area, too many accidents have occurred by tripping over something.
Next, stand as close as you can to the object. Never reach for an object. With your feet shoulder width apart, one foot slightly in front of the other and sure footing, squat down to the object.Do not bend.
When you pick the item up use your leg and arm muscles, not your back. When you pick it up, hold it close as you move around the room. Walk over to where you want the item to be placed.
With the destination in front of you, gently lower the object down. Do not bend, or twist this will cause back strain.
If you’re unable to get help, you can push the item. If you must pull stand sideways to the item, with feet shoulder width apart, pull with your arms and leg muscles.
How Do I Stop These Muscle Spasms?
Some people soak in a nice warm bath containing their favorite fragrance. This will relax muscles and it’ll help relieve some of your stress and tension, which increases the pain.
Others find that ice packs work better. Do not apply ice directly to the skin and only leave on for 20 minutes at a time, with a half hour break in between.
Stretching will sometimes stop the muscle spasms. As you stretch, you decrease the pressure on the painful area.
Some people use a tennis ball. They apply just enough pressure to the painful area, rubbing the ball around to work out the knots.
There’s over the counter medicines like Ibuprofen, Tylenol. You could try a topical pain reliever instead of oral medicines.
Some try massages or acupuncture to relieve these painful symptoms. Both are proven to help ease the pain.
Summing it up
When our parents told us to sit up straight we thought they were nagging us. Actually the advice was for our own good.
Studies show that poor posture puts our body out of alignment and it puts pressure on our muscles, which can cause muscle spasms to occur.