Back pain is a common ailment all around the world. In fact, in the United States, it is one of the most common types of pain. Back pain occurs for a number of reasons, such as poor weight management, bad posture, sports injuries and psychological problems. No matter the reason, this type of pain can be debilitating and can affect the quality of life of the person suffering. Here are a few practical ways to alleviate back pain.
Avoid Sleeping on Your Front
Studies show that the way you sleep can have a significant impact on people with back pain. The body does not react well when you lie on your front when sleeping. Resting on your stomach overnight can cause lower back pain and neck strain. To reduce your risk of back pain, try to avoid sleeping on your stomach. Instead, try to sleep on your side in a fetal position. If you need a bit of extra support in the lower back and hip, slip a pillow in between your legs.
Change Your Mattress
In addition to your sleeping position, evidence shows that the condition of your mattress and bed can make you lose sleep and worsen back pain. Not only will you feel uncomfortable sleeping on an old mattress, but you also need high-quality sleep for the body to be able to recuperate. According to data found by the Sleep Foundation, you need to replace your mattress if it is 6 to 8 years old and potentially sooner if it is well-used. An old mattress in used condition loses it shape and sags over time. In turn, it is not fit to support the body. On the other hand, a mattress in good condition will support the body and can help you achieve a good night’s rest. Furthermore, people prefer the additional support an extra firm mattress gives. Sleeping on a firmer surface can help maintain spine alignment and alleviate back problems.
Avoid Sitting Still For Long Periods of Time
When you’re experiencing pain in the back, the last thing you want is to move around. However, sitting still for a long time can exact more pressure on the discs in your spine and make your back feel stiff and painful. In the long term, a sedentary lifestyle can actually make back pain worse. Get into the habit of moving around to avoid stiffness. Not only is this good for your back, but regular gentle movement can also reduce the risk of pain in other areas of your body too. Try to incorporate core-strengthening low-impact exercises throughout the day. Gentle stretches and core-strengthening exercises can help strengthen the back and ward off pain. Tai chi, pilates and yoga are all great for the back, while simple activities such as walking up and down stairs can help make your core stronger.
A healthy weight is not only great for relieving back pain, but it is also good for your overall health. Excess body weight strains the body and can lead to a number of health conditions. A healthy body weight enables your body systems to function properly, which is why it is important to stay active and watch what you eat. A healthy diet and eating in moderation can help you maintain good body weight.