How to Avoid Developing Lower Back Pain at Work

Many jobs require you to either spend a long period of time standing or, in contrast, sitting down. But neither of those is favorable to your health, and, in both situations, back pains might appear.

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Back pains created by incorrect posture are a frequent cause for medical visits. Some may be just because you spent too much time sitting at your desk, others because you did not sit down enough, and others because of more serious causes.

back pain
Lower-back pain; image source: pexels.com

What is a back pain?

Anyone had experienced, at least one time in their lives, back pains. They may appear at any given time and at any age, though adults and elderly people are, most of the time, those who suffer from it.

Both men and women are equally affected by lower back pain, as it not only ranges in intensity but also in duration.

It can go from a subtle discomfort to an excruciating pain in a matter of moments if you do a wrong twist, or it can last just for a few minutes, instead of weeks and months, with the right treatment.

Common Causes

  • Strains – muscles and ligaments are often the cause of strains pain, as they can get damaged easily during your daily routine. Because of a sudden pressure put on them, the muscles stretch too much causing pain, vulnerability in the area or the inability to move at all.
  • Wrong movement and incorrect stance – twists such as those for golf, bends to grab grocery bags, over-stretching and bending in an awkward position for a long time, keeping your position seated or, in contrast, standing for too long, long drives with no break, and even sleeping on a bad mattresses can also be a cause for back pains derived from bad posture.
  • Medical problems – these are more serious than the already mentioned pains, and on several occasions, special attention and treatment is required. They may also include disk-related problems, where too much pressure is put on your spinal nerves by a ruptured or bulging disk, sciatica, arthritis, scoliosis, osteoporosis or even kidney problems.
  • Other similar causes for back pains are also on the serious side of the problem, as they can be even more dangerous to your general well-being. They may include cancer or different infections.

How to prevent back pains

back-pain
Back pain; image source: pixabay.com

If you suffer from back pains or if you have a predisposition for them, fear not, you can prevent them. There are several ways to do so:

  • Regular exercises – it keeps you healthy, your muscles in top shape and the pain away from you. Make time for some exercises, at least 30 minutes per day, in order to keep both your physical and psychical condition in form.
  • Clothes and shoes – use fitting clothes. Do not wear clothes too tight, as they might be an impediment for blood circulation. Plus, check your shoes. High heels might be in fashion, but they are surely extremely uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time, and not to mention if you have to stand all day long. Use flat shoes. Also called shoes for nurses they might not be as fashionable as your favorite pair of heels, but they will surely keep you away from aching legs and strained back.
  • Diet and food – keep record of what your body needs. If you need more calcium or other vitamins, eat food that has those vitamins. This will also help with bone strength and weight control, both factors which are directly related to back pains.
  • Correct posture – according to your daily routine, if you stand or sit all day long, there is a correct way in which you should keep your body in order to prevent straining your muscles. While standing, keep your posture straight-up, with your back in a vertical, while your head faces forward. Make sure to distribute your weight evenly on both legs. While sitting, consider using a chair which has both arm and back support. Also, keep your knees and hips aligned with your feet completely flat on the floor. If you cannot touch the floor, use a foot small chair.
  • Carrying and lifting – never put your strain on your back! Basically, never rise using your back muscles. Use your legs instead. Plant them firmly in the ground; keep your stomach tightened and your knees slightly bent. That way you may avoid a back strain. Also, be sure not to twist or turn while lifting things.
  • Home comfort – pay attention to your mattress. You might be tempted to use one that keeps your back straight but take into account using one that supports all your body. For it to be ergonomic use one that takes your body shape. In that way, you will be sure that all your body is supported.

Simple tricks

If you are in need of a method that can alleviate your back discomfort, there are a few simple exercises that can be done. They are going to loosen up those too-tight muscles.

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  1. Alternate sitting with standing. Stand up and sit down without using your hands for a few times.
  2. Rotate your shoulders – it releases neck and shoulder pressure. Also, try to shrug them for a bit.
  3. Slightly twist your upper body and extend your legs. It helps with stiff back and sleepy legs.
  4. Take a short break. Get up from your chair and take a walk or go and eat something. It clears the mind and your body will be thankful for the change.

In a nutshell, if you know your back pain is not a medical condition and is not from a fall or injury, change your posture, take a break from what you are doing and relax a bit. It will do wonders for both your mental and physical health.

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