1. Repetitive movements
Often creatures of habit, we find ourselves doing the same things day in and day out. One of the main reasons for pain persisting is the development of faulty movement patterns and postures which create repetitive stress on the back. This repetitive strain is what leads to the vicious cycle of pain. For example, lifting your baby out of their cot, lifting heavy saucepans, getting in and out of the car, or poor lifting technique at the gym.
Correcting faulty movements and postures will improve the way you load and use your back.
2. Bad habits
Our brains are hardwired to develop habitual patterns which, from an evolutionary point of view, gives us a great advantage. Habitual patterns allow our brain to perform clockwork actions with very little brain power, such as riding a bicycle. This frees up the brainpower we need to think important, non-repetitive thoughts, or higher-level thinking.
As with many other things in life, there’s a payback to any evolutionary advantage. In this case the obvious one is that we can develop bad habits as well as good ones…
The thing is, we usually aren’t aware of such bad habits until we develop a problem and start to analyse what we do every day. The big one is how we sit. Are you curling up with your legs tucked to the side while you watch TV? Or do you sit in the office with a slumped spine? Or do you sit in your car leaning towards the central console? The list is endless.
Try spending one day out of every week doing everything in the opposite way than you normally do. For example, sitting on the sofa with feet always tucked under and to one side, should be reversed. See if you notice a difference...
Smokers are much more prone to spinal problems, as the act impairs blood flow, resulting in oxygen and nutrient deprivation to spinal tissues. This essentially results in the spinal discs ageing much faster.
How stressed are you? How we feel can influence the amount of pain we feel. Back pain can be triggered following changes in life stress, mood or anxiety levels.
In the same way that these factors are linked to other health conditions like cold sores, irritable bowel syndrome and tiredness, they have a very large effect on back pain. As a result, managing our stress, mood and anxiety levels through doing things we enjoy, and engaging in relaxation can be really beneficial in helping back pain.
Why does being overweight cause problems? Not only does the extra weight put more strain on the joints, but having a larger belly in particular will cause the spine to be pulled forward and the joints in the posterior part of the spine getting pushed together. This creates additional wear and tear in the joints.
Being overweight also disrupts the ligamentous tension around the spinal disc. This tension allows nutrients to diffuse into the disc, therefore keeping it healthy. Without it, the disc becomes dehydrated and thinner which results in inflammation. This combined with the typical decreased muscle tone, results in the spine and spinal joints suffering damage.
Back pain treatment involves identifying the root cause of the pain and then targeting the treatment towards it. Injections, medications, and other passive therapies can help temporarily in providing pain relief, but they cannot stimulate the healing process. Osteopathy treatment in a controlled, gradual, and progressive manner is an effective way to stimulate the healing process.
If you’re suffering with pain in the spine, give us a call now on 01722 512 043 and we’ll get you sorted out in no time.