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  • Writer's pictureChad Arterburn

Back Pain, “Getting Old”?

Lots of people nowadays assume that back pain is related to the fact that they are growing old.

Time could set such a scar on our bodies, but that is not always the issue.

In general, back pain is the result of spinal joints, muscles, discs, nerves not quite fitting and moving together.

The reasons for this are quite a few, and here we will talk about the causes and treatments that are available to us.

Ready to get back on track? Let’s get to it!

Your Spine Is Amazing

So, let’s first talk about the guest of honor - the spine. The spine is a stack of 24 bones called the “vertebrae”.

A healthy-looking spine is “S” shaped when viewed from the side. It curves back at your shoulders and inward at your neck, and a little at your back.

It offers safe living conditions to your spinal cord - Think of your spinal cord as a network of nerves that transmits feelings and controls the movement around your whole body.

The most common back pain is related to the band of muscles surrounding the spine.

People usually attend to their doctors for help because of lower back pain and pain in the neck.

What Are the Risk Factors?

It's a good idea to clear the air about some of the most common misconceptions regarding back pain.

The first, and most related, is age. As we get older, around 30 - 40 years old, back pain becomes more and more common.

That doesn’t mean that it’s the only age period in which it happens. Children and teens can suffer from different types of back-related pain, depending on their lifestyle and exercise routines.

Lack of exercises the next risk factor. Weak and unused muscles in the back and abdomen tend to be the culprit for regular pain.

Another common factor is excess weight and various diseases. However, we tend to overlook that being overweight or having a cold may lead to lower back pain.

In one case, the muscles cannot comprehend the amount of excess weight and fat and fail to function properly.

In the other case, when our immune system weakens, the muscles weaken, as well. This is all stress for the spine, and the results may leave us confused as to why it hurts.

For gym fanatics, the possibility of waking up with a sore back is improper weightlifting. When we lift with our back and not our knees, there is a huge chance we will get hurt.

Not to mention that lifting more than our body can endure is a pure gamble with our body’s health.

Stress, depression, and anxiety are quite the common factors for having problems with your back.

Smoking is a not-so-popular factor when it comes to why it hurts. The reason is coughing, which could lead to herniated disks.

It also decreases blood flow to the spine and increases the chance of osteoporosis.

It’s No Joke!

Back pain can quickly leave you paralyzed. Therefore, one should not take the matter lightly because the consequences could be dire.

It is suggested that we should rush off to the doctor if we have uncontrolled urination and bowel movement.

This is one of the first signs you are going to endure when the problem is severe.

Falling or bruising your back is an absolute risk hazard. Your doctor will have his way with you if you don’t act quickly.

Another sign that your back is in trouble is when it interferes with your daily activities and doesn’t go away for more than six weeks.

Let’s be honest. If it hurts when you bend over or haven’t stopped hurting for the last month and a half, it’s a clear sign you should act right now.

So, what is it that you can do for your back to make your spine happy and healthy? Well, the truth is that if the problem is severe, you should go to a professional because reading an article online won’t quite simply resolve a chronic/severe injury.

However, if you are aware of the possibility of back pains and are willing to do everything to prevent it or are simply trying to treat minor discomfort.

When it comes to actionable advice, what can one do to make their back happy? Quite frankly, it is about establishing a long-lasting, friendly relationship with your back (and your entire body).

Let’s see what matters in that relationship!

Sleeping Habits

First and utmost, let’s start with the simplest of factors affecting back pain - sleeping habits!

A night of restful and long sleep will make your back feel less sore during the day.

There are a couple of things to try to fall fast and vast asleep and rejuvenate your back's efficiency.

Vitamin C and B6 are natural compounds in your body that control the metabolism and promote good sleep. It’s a good start to having a stronger and sound sleep.

Melatonin, which is the sleep hormone, is a perfect idea for a supplement that could put your sleep agenda on time. If you don’t want to supplement it, fine-tune your body, and it will produce it naturally on its own - to do so, wake up early and go to bed within 3-5 hours after the sun goes down!

L-theanine and Valerian are both supplements that are found in plants and are a safe and guaranteed method for falling asleep, so if you happen to be restless, these might just be the solution!

Your Posture Matters

It’s extremely important to pay attention to the position of the joints and muscles of your spine and hip.

An everyday routine that may lead to back pain regarding your posture, is spending too much time sitting.

When you stay seated for a long duration of time, the pressure on your spinal discs increases and you probably know the feeling!

Aim to take walks every hour after being seated, maybe do some little exercises, or get a standing desk.

A golden rule that you should follow is a daily regimen of activities that includes rotation exercises.

The idea is to prevent the same set of muscles and joints from getting overly fatigued.

It’s essential to change your position and let the muscles and joints relax for considerable periods.

Movement Is Food for Your Bones!

Not that doing sports isn’t always a good idea for lowering the risks of back pain, but there are other, more subtle methods, as well.

Regular low-impact aerobics activities can increase the strength and endurance of your back and allow your muscles to function better. Just be cautious about overdoing it and straining your back!

Building muscle strength and working on flexibility are two things that will have an impact on your back.

Abdominal and back muscles exercises help condition these muscles like a natural corset for your back.

Yoga And Meditation

Yoga could be considered a low-impact aerobic activity, but it’s more than just that. Its efficiency is the thing that makes you feel brand new.

It helps you stretch your back, improve the health of the muscles and joints, and enhance the distribution of healing nutrients through blood circulation.

This way, your spine will feel like it could bend better than ever. Just remember to always do yoga slowly and preferably early in the morning.

Meditation can be quite useful, as well. It’s a great way to improve concentration, release feel-good hormones, and decrease anxiety and stress.

You could find a quiet, dark room where you can sit for 5-10 minutes in the morning or before you go to bed.

If you don’t like meditating, there is always the breathing exercise, where you take ten slow breaths in a row.

Warm Water Feels GOOD!

The buoyancy of the water helps you do exercises with less effort and pain. It also helps to regulate the functions of the nerves and muscles.

You can also go to a mineral water spring - the water rejuvenates and loosens the nerves and muscles, leaving you feeling like you’re a new person.

Final Thoughts

The best way to treat back pain is to prevent it!

If, however, you are already experiencing back pain, it’s important to see your doctor so they can assess the source of this issue and provide any necessary treatment or medication for relief that may be needed.

With proper care, most people with lower-back problems will find themselves feeling better in a matter of weeks or even days.

It is also recommended to not engage in strenuous activity until symptoms subside; otherwise, there is the risk of worsening the condition - which could lead to long-term complications like muscle spasms or nerve damage if left untreated.

Taking these actions should help alleviate most cases of discomfort associated with lower-back issues!

So go ahead - Fix your posture, fix your sleep, and get moving!

All The Best,

Coach Chad

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