Invest In Your Health: 3 Effective Ways to Relieve and Prevent Back Pain

You know the problem is getting serious when you start to relate snaps and cracks more with your back pain than your bowl of cereal. Whether you’re leading a sedentary lifestyle or experiencing chronic back pain, you’re not alone. Lower back pain is extremely common, especially as we get older. It’s the number one reason for missed workdays throughout the globe. Thankfully, there are a lot of easy remedies. Some of them prevent back pain, and others help relieve it. Either way, learn how to manage your back pain by taking these five very effective steps.

1. Invest in a Memory Foam Mattress

woman placing hand on memory foam mattress in furniture shop

Different factors can cause back pain. This can make it harder for you to determine if your mattress is the culprit. So, how do you know if your sleeping environment is causing it or not? These can be some indicators:

  • Your pain is worse in the morning;
  • You find yourself tossing and turning throughout the night;
  • Your mattress is more than seven years old.

If these statements are true for you, it might be the time to invest in a new high-quality mattress. Buying a supportive and comfortable mattress can help ease your aches and prevent additional discomfort regardless of the causes of your back pain.

Which kind of mattress is best for your back? Many people think sleeping on a firm mattress is best for back pain, but this isn’t completely true. Most people with back pain benefit from a medium-firm mattress, as a too firm one can also cause spine misalignment and push the shoulders and hips out. This makes the memory foam matress the best solution for lower back pain.

Foam mattresses come in various forms and sizes and have a few qualities that set them apart from other mattress options. The most notable advantages are pressure relief and motion isolation, which are especially beneficial for side sleepers. The foam contours to the body and helps evenly disperse your weight. This creates a hugging sensation that prevents pressure build-up on the hips and shoulders.

If you’re dealing with joint pain or toss and turn heavily at night, the memory foam matress might be right for you too. This is especially true for those sharing a double bed mattress, as the memory foam absorbs motion, meaning you’re less likely to disturb your partner as you shift sleep positions.

If you’ve never tried a foam mattress, you may wonder how it feels to sleep on one. Floating on clouds, getting a big, warm hug and feeling under zero pressure are among my favourite descriptions that capture the idea.

One thing to bear in mind is that foam mattresses tend to sleep warmer than other mattresses, which makes them the perfect go-along with breathable bedding materials, such as bamboo.

2. Optimise Your Workplace Ergonomics

Ergonomic black chair in office

Another major factor for back pain is poor posture. Your job may require sitting, standing or reclining for several hours a day. This often leads to making awkward movements that increase strain on back muscles or put pressure on the spine. When these awkward postures become repetitive and prolonged, there’s an inevitable risk of pain and injury.

While you can’t do much about your work hours and the nature of your job, optimising how you stand or sit can greatly impact your posture and back pain. Although investing in your workspace ergonomics may sound expensive, it’s not often. An ergonomic chair and a sit-stand desk can be very beneficial. Still, sometimes little changes like setting up your screen, trying keyboard techniques and investing in a laptop stand can make the most significant difference.

If you’re standing for a prolonged time, you might consider buying a pair of orthopedic shoes with additional arch support. And, it’s smart to create reminders to encourage yourself to sit or stand correctly. That way, you can remain in good posture no matter your workplace setup.

3. Exercise and Stretch Daily

Woman stretching on grass at sunset

Exercise is the easiest way to fix your back and prevent further problems. It can also help with back pain due to heavy lifting. Research has shown that exercise can strengthen the lower back and increase blood flow to the lower back area. This helps reduce stiffness and speed up the healing process.

The right exercises can also help you strengthen the core, leg and arm muscles. It’s shown that people with stronger cores manage back pain more successfully or don’t experience back problems at all.

What are some of the most effective exercises for reducing and preventing lower back pain? These are the top 10 stretches and exercises for a stronger back and core:

  1. Glute bridges
  2. Knee-to-chest stretches
  3. Lower back rotational stretches
  4. Draw-in maneuvres
  5. Pelvic tilts
  6. Lying lateral leg lifts
  7. Cat stretches
  8. Supermans
  9. Seated lower back rotational stretches
  10. Partial curls

Doing these exercises and stretches daily can go a long way. None of them requires a great effort, yet, the results can be outstanding. You can do some of these, such as the seated rotation at work, to reverse the pain from sitting for too long.

When To Seek Professional Help?

patient speaking to doctor about back pain

Although these three ways can be very effective for lower back pain management, sometimes they’re not enough, especially if you have a medical condition such as sclerosis or kyphosis. If you’re experiencing moderate pain that keeps you from participating in your daily activities for more than ten days, you should see your doctor. You should see a doctor sooner if your pain is severe, and if it’s accompanied by fever, you should seek urgent medical care.

Your doctor might suggest you several treatment plans. Some of them can include OTC pain killers, regular massages or other forms of physical therapy. Many people have a good experience with chiropractor care. A chiropractor is a person trained to make body or spine adjustments. Getting adjusted by a chiropractor can help your spine return to its natural form, which can help determine lower back pain for a while.

Whichever treatment you choose, ensure you work with professionals who understand body anatomy and are qualified to do what they do. Only that way you can achieve a happier and ache-free life.