Not many people are aware that your spinal health impacts your overall health. That’s why some people start thinking about spinal wellness only when they begin to feel pain.
Others continue to ignore the problem even when the pain becomes chronic. A recent ATPA survey revealed that 37% of people who experience chronic back pain don’t seek professional help.
If you ignore a problem, you’ll never find a solution. Especially if we’re talking about the spine. Fortunately, your chiropractors in Raleigh, NC are all about solutions.
Importance of Keeping a Healthy Spine
Your spine is made out of 24 vertebrae, which are separated by discs. In addition to keeping your spine together, the discs also act as shock absorbers. As you move, the discs allow your spinal column to move in different directions.
Your spine has three major functions:
- Communication: An electrical current travels up and down your spine. The current sends signals that allow certain body parts to communicate with your brain.
- Reflexes: A reflex is an inventory response that occurs from stimuli involving your spine, brain, and peripheral nervous system.
- Movement: The simple act of taking a step would be impossible without a spine. The spine is made out of neurons, which send the signals from your brain to make your leg muscles move.
You experience problems from head to toe if your spine isn’t working properly. So what causes spinal injuries?
Unsurprisingly, two of the most common causes of spinal injuries are:
- Car crashes, which are responsible for 31.5% of injuries;
- Slips and falls, which are responsible for 25.3% of injuries.
Most accidents happen without any warning, which means you can’t influence them. Does that mean you can’t do anything to keep your spine healthy?
No, not at all.
There are certain things you can do to lessen the strain on your spine and prevent any possible injuries. Make sure you consult your local Raleigh injury chiropractic if you feel pain.
5 Tips for Keeping a Healthy Spine
Injuring your spine is much easier if you put too much pressure on it all the time. Some of the things you do are fairly obvious while others are not.
Here are a few tips for spine wellness that will help you keep your back in great condition.
1. Get Up from Your Desk Every 30 Minutes
A majority of people that suffer from spine problems and chronic back pain must spend all day on their feet, right?
Research has shown that more than 50% of people who experience major back problems spend 8 hours a day sitting behind their desks.
Simply put, your body isn’t designed to sit at a 90-degree angle for so long. Make sure to give your spine an opportunity to decompress regularly, if you spend so much of your time sitting down. Take a break, go for a walk, and do a couple of stretching exercises, every 30 to 45 minutes.
2. Stand Up from Your Couch Every Hour
As we established, sitting down for long periods won’t do your spine any favors. And according to new medical findings, lying down for prolonged periods has the same effect as sitting down.
Basically, it means that you should take a break from time to time, even when you’re resting.
Make sure to stand up, walk, and do some stretching, every half-an-hour. Put a pillow under your knees and rest for an hour without taking a break, if you’re feeling completely drained. The pillow will at least keep your spine straight while you’re resting.
3. Work on Your Lifting Form
The phrase “lifting form” is mostly used by weightlifters. However, even the average person should pay attention to. New studies suggest that vibration from driving long distances and heavy lifting can cause “ occupational back pain.“
Common back injuries such as pulled back muscles and herniated discs happen because of poor lifting forms. First squat down to the object you want to lift with one foot in front of the other, if you want to prevent possible injuries. Then bend and lift the object from your hips and knees.
4. Be Careful While You’re Texting
Americans check their phones 80 times a day, on average. That means most of us to check our phones every 12 minutes or so. What’s worse, 10% of people check their phones around 240 times a day or every 4 minutes. It’s safe to say that we keep our heads down, to stare at our phones, a lot.
This is a bigger problem than you think.
You can develop a condition called “text neck ” and wreck your spine if you keep your head down to look at your phone. When texting, bring your arms up and put your phone in front of your face while typing on your phone, to avoid this problem. That way, you won’t tilt your head down to see your screen.
5. Start Warming Up Properly Before Exercising
Possibly the easiest way to hurt yourself is to engage in physical activity without a proper warm-up. You need to do the proper stretches before you start exercising to avoid getting injured, whether you’re a jogger, runner, or lifter.
As the American Council on Exercising explains, stretching can improve your joint flexibility and in turn, decreases your risk of injury. Try to stretch as part of your routine. Do some stretches in the morning before work. That’ll ensure that you never forget to stretch before you start to workout, ever again.
Most spinal injuries go unreported. In some cases, people simply won’t visit a doctor. Some 37% of people that experience back problems don’t visit a doctor or their local Raleigh back pain clinic.
In other cases, people are not even aware that their spine needs treatment. A slight backache may turn into chronic pain. Chronic pain may be a sign of something more serious.
Your spine is, quite literally, the backbone of everything you do. You wouldn’t be able to work, exercise, or even rest properly, if anything happened to your spine.
Use our tips to ensure your spine stays as healthy as possible for the rest of your life. Make sure to seek professional help if you feel any pain. Remember, the spine is the main pillar of health.