Staying active can take a lot of time and energy — two things that many people never seem to have enough of. But by being inactive, you could actually be doing some serious harm to your body than if you were staying active. Back pain is just one example of how inactivity can lead to pain and injury. As a back pain doctor Gaithersburg MD trusts, we have three tips for anyone who has trouble exercising on a regular basis and is experiencing mild back pain.
1. Regular Movement
If you work in an office, you probably spend a lot of time sitting at your desk. If you’re like most office workers, you might stay sitting in the same position for hours at a time. One way to prevent back pain is simply to move around throughout the day. It’s often recommended to get up and move every 20 to 30 minutes. Taking a short walk or stretching at your desk are two ways to move around for a few minutes.
Even though a large percentage of people today work in jobs that require sedentary sitting positions, the human body isn’t built to stay sitting all day long. Standing throughout the day can help build strength in your midsection, which can decrease stress and pain in the lower back. Rather than spending a lot of money on a new ergonomic chair, you might want to consider a standing desk. Investing in a standing desk can be a smart move if you spend a lot of time on the computer, regardless of whether you work in an office or at home.
2. Pay Attention to Nutrition
Don’t worry— this doesn’t necessarily mean dieting! If you’ve been experiencing back pain, you might want to pay extra attention to the types of foods you eat. Lower back pain is sometimes related to inflammation in the digestive system, and certain foods could either increase or decrease the inflammation in your digestive organs.
- Leafy green vegetables
- Fish high in healthy fats
- Olive oil
And at the same time, you may want to avoid foods that have been shown to increase inflammation. These foods include:
- Margarine or shortening
- Fried foods
- Refined carbohydrates
- Red meats
When your gut is inflamed by poor eating habits, the body will compromise your core muscles to protect your internal organs. When that occurs, you’re setting yourself up for low back pain.
3. Exercise and Pain
Going to the gym at first can be hard — but what if you chose to think about the outcome in a different light? Instead of focusing on all the work it takes to make it to the gym, rethink it as how you are building a whole new body that will be in less pain after the workouts. All of that soreness you feel now will eliminate long term back pain in the future. Instead of, “This pain is killing me,” think about how good you will feel gaining strength and being able to go out and start a new activity or sport.
While there are steps you can take to avoiding back pain at the office, there may still be instances where your employer is negligently exposing your to conditions that have caused you to develop back issues. If you think that this might be the case, contacting a respected personal injury lawyer may be in your best interest. He or she could help you get the compensation you deserve.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Pain & Arthritis Relief Center for their insight into work-related back injuries