The new year has arrived, and with it, a lot of health-related resolutions. If getting rid of lower back or neck pain is on your to-do list for 2015, we have a few simple but effective ways to get the results you want:
- Sit up straight. Sure, it sounded like nagging when your mom or a teacher said it to you when you were a kid, but maintaining good posture throughout the day helps distribute your body weight evenly and relieve muscle stress and strain causing both back and neck pain. Invest in a lumbar cushion for your work chair or car to remind you to sit up straight throughout the day.
- Lose weight. Easier said than done for most of us, but even losing a few pounds can significantly reduce the strain on your back muscles.
- Quit smoking. Smoking wreaks havoc on your circulatory health, making it more difficult for muscles and other tissues to get the nutrients needed to work properly. Quitting isn’t easy; for help, visit http://smokefree.gov/.
- Manage your stress. Stress causes back and neck muscles to tighten up, putting unnatural strains on your spine and causing headaches and chronic neck and neck pain. Yoga, meditation and visualization are simple techniques that take a little practice to master, but can really help you learn to reduce your stress. Just setting aside some time each day to do something you enjoy also is a step in the right direction.
- Get plenty of sleep. Yes, we saved the best (and easiest) for last. Making sure you get the rest you need on a mattress that properly supports your back provides the spine the support and time needed to perform daily healing tasks so your back stays healthy throughout your busy day.
And of course, if you have chronic or sudden back pain in Washington and the greater Seattle area, be sure to schedule an appointment with us by calling 800.890.1964 to have it evaluated. At Microsurgical Spine Center you can be sure you’re getting the care you need to keep your spine at its best. Happy 2015!