Five tips for looking after your back
When leading a busy life, it’s easy to forget how much stress we put our back under. From carrying a bag to picking up a heavy package, our back plays a significant part in our daily routine. Back care awareness week is celebrated on the second week of October each year to remind us of just how important it is to look after our back health.
Here’s our top tips for looking after your back:
Improve your posture
Although this sounds self-explanatory, sitting and walking straight can save you from more than you realise. Good posture ensures the right muscles are being used at the right time throughout your body. It also prevents the spine from becoming fixed in abnormal positions and reduces fatigue as your muscles are being used more efficiently.
Stretching and exercising your core with low-impact cardiovascular exercise increases blood flow to the spine and therefore contributes to good back health.
Don’t sit for too long
Although sitting straight is good for your back, try to take a short break from sitting every 30 minutes, even if that just means standing.
The NHS states that “smoking reduces the blood supply to the discs between the vertebrae, and this may lead to these discs degenerating”. Just one more reason to quit then!
A tell-tale sign of your bed being detrimental to your back health is waking up with stiff or painful muscles. Ensure that you are sleeping on a mattress which gives you the correct support and comfort for your weight and build, not just firmness.
For more information on how to take care of your back or how to treat back pain, check out the NHS’s Health A-Z.