If you’re one of the millions of Americans dealing with chronic back pain, you may be wondering if surgery is your only option to become pain free. The good news is that there are several things you can do to avoid back pain and back surgery. Here are some tips on how to avoid back pain and back surgery.
Maintain a healthy weight.
Excess weight puts additional strain on your back, which can lead to chronic back pain and injury. For every pound of extra weight, you add 4-5 pounds of stress on your back! Losing even a few pounds can make a big difference in reducing your back pain. In addition to helping you avoid back surgery, losing weight can help reduce your risk of developing chronic diseases such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and certain types of cancer. It can also help lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels and improve breathing. All of these physical health benefits can lead to an overall improvement in your quality of life.
Remember, though, that it’s important to consult with a doctor or other healthcare professional before starting any weight loss journey to ensure that it’s safe for you.
We all know that stretching is important, but sometimes it’s hard to motivate ourselves to do it. There are some great benefits of stretching and regular physical activity that make it worth the effort to minimize your back pain and decrease your chances of getting unwanted back surgery. Stretching helps improve your flexibility by lengthening your muscles and increasing your range of motion. This will help you sit and stand taller with less effort. Stretching exercises that focus on strengthening your stomach muscles are also helpful. This is especially beneficial if you have a sedentary job or lifestyle. Some classic stretching exercises are child pose, cat and camel, and static back press.
When it comes to determining which exercises to incorporate into your routine, we recommend considering high quality physical therapy or the Egoscue Method. By incorporating exercise and stretching regularly, you can help minimize muscle strain and reduce back pain.
Use proper lifting techniques to avoid back-related injuries.
Many people don’t realize the importance of proper lifting techniques until they find themselves dealing with serious back pain. Learning how to lift properly is essential for anyone who wants to avoid a trip to the doctor or emergency room. Follow these simple tips and you’ll be lifting like a pro in no time!
When lifting anything, it’s important to use your leg muscles, not your back to avoid back pain. Bending at the waist and using your back muscles to lift puts you at risk of making your back pain worse. Instead, squat down and use your legs to lift the object. This may take a bit more effort upfront, but it will save you a lot of pain in the long run.
Don’t twist your body when lifting. Another common mistake people make when lifting is twisting their body instead of moving their feet. This puts unnecessary strain on your spine and can lead to serious injuries. If you need to turn while carrying an object, move your feet instead of twisting your torso.
Use good form and proper posture when lifting weights. This means keeping your back straight, avoiding jerky motions, and using slow, controlled movements when you exercise. Lifting weights with bad form and poor posture not only decreases the effectiveness of your workout, but it also puts you at risk for injuries.
While there are many prescription medications available to treat back pain, there are also a number of natural supplements that can help ease your symptoms. Here are four supplements to try.
- Glucosamine sulfate is a natural compound that’s found in the cartilage around your joints. It’s often taken as a supplement to help reduce joint pain and inflammation.
- Chondroitin sulfate is another compound found in cartilage. It’s thought to work by preventing enzymes from breaking down the cartilage in your joints.
- Turmeric is a spice that’s commonly used in Indian cuisine. It contains a compound called curcumin, which has been shown to reduce inflammation and pain in people with arthritis.
- Omega-3 fatty acids are a type of healthy fat that’s found in fish oil. They’re thought to help reduce inflammation throughout the body, which can lead to joint pain relief.
If you’re considering taking any of these supplements to help with your back pain, it’s important to speak with your doctor first. Some supplements can interact with certain medications or medical conditions.
How’s your mattress?
- This is an investment in back pain prevention and for treating back related injuries. Sleeping on a poor mattress can wreak havoc on your back muscles and create poor posture. Consider upgrading to a quality mattress and pillow. Considering the average person spends a third of their life sleeping, investing in a quality mattress and pillow can help alleviate back pain. Many people have found their low back pain improves or even subsides after they invest in a quality mattress and pillow.
How’s your posture?
- If you are sitting a lot during the day like so many have during the pandemic, it’s important that you focus on good posture. Ensuring you have the proper posture while sitting is important to reducing back pain.
Seek a Second Opinion.
It’s not uncommon for patients to seek a second opinion before having surgery for back pain, especially because these procedures are invasive and can have a long recovery period. You may be surprised to learn that you don’t need surgery to ease your back pain even if you’ve been told it’s your only option! At Derrington Orthopedics, we always recommend evaluating all of your treatment options before undergoing surgery for back pain.
We offer several effective non-surgical treatments that can help relieve your back pain and improve your quality of life without the risks associated with surgery.
Contact us today at (760) 721-4000 to schedule a consultation with our experienced team.