The truth is that modern life isn’t particularly great for our bodies. We’re more likely than ever to sit too much, maintain poor posture, carry extra weight, and consume an unbalanced diet. This affects your entire body, and your back is no exception. All of these behaviors combined over the years are what wears down your back over time. Here are some of the most common behaviors that are actively contributing to your back pain.
What Wears Down Your Back?
Maintaining proper posture is really important for your back. It keeps everything aligned, maximizing your ability to support the delicate structures that make up your body. When you slouch or hunch, you are actively increasing the strain on the muscles and bones that make up your back.
Your body needs lean proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and water to maintain your bones and muscles. Regardless of how many calories you’re consuming, if you aren’t getting enough nutrients, then you are going to see negative effects. Making too many of the wrong nutritional choices can cause inflammation, resulting in increased discomfort.
Sleeping on Your Stomach
Sleeping on your back is generally thought to be the most beneficial for patients with back pain. As long as your mattress is well-suited to you, it should also be one of the most comfortable positions. Sleeping on your side is a close second as long as you put a pillow between your knees to help with the alignment of your hips.
Unfortunately, sleeping on your stomach puts more pressure on your cervical spine, as you have to keep your head turned to one extreme or the other throughout the night. As a result, people who sleep on their stomach are more likely to toss and turn. They are also more likely to experience regular discomfort in their neck and back.
Sitting or Standing Too Much
The human body was made to move. Staying in one set position for too long puts excess pressure on the spine and the muscles that support it. Whether you sit all day or stand all day, you have to find ways to vary your position if you want to protect your spinal health. You can also decrease the negative effects by paying attention to your posture and correcting it as needed.
We all know that smoking is bad for your health, but there are a number of negative effects that you may not know about. One of the properties of nicotine is that it constricts your blood vessels. This reduces your body’s ability to deliver plenty of oxygenated blood to your muscles, bones, and other tissues. As a result, the discs between each vertebra are likely to break down much faster.
Lack of Exercise
Carrying too much excess body weight puts more strain on all of your major systems, including your spine. Larger people can offset some of this by building up the muscles needed to support their back and core. By the same measure, people with lower weights can still suffer from back pain if their muscles are too underdeveloped to support their spine.
Wearing the Wrong Shoes
What you wear on your feet has a direct effect on your back. High heels tend to be the culprit here, but poorly fitted shoes or those lacking proper support can also lead to chronic back pain. If you will be wearing shoes that are less-than-ideal for your spine, then limit how much you wear them and opt for insoles that increase your comfort.
Addressing Ongoing Back Pain
Sadly, it isn’t easy to avoid all of the most common causes of back pain. What wears down your back might not always be obvious. But it can be mitigated. If you’re experiencing back pain, your first stop should be to your local spinal specialist at Yashar Neurosurgery. The doctor will want to discuss your lifestyle habits and examine your spine for abnormalities. If nothing serious is discovered, then a non-surgical spinal decompression treatment can be used to provide relief.