Category Archives: Tips & Tricks To Prevent Back Pain

Implementing An Ergonomics Program – Egonomic Corrections to Relieve Back Pain

Egonomic Corrections to Relieve Back Pain

If you sit at a desk for most of the day and notice that when you stand up at the end of the day, your back is sore, you may be suffering from poor ergonomics.

Ergonomics is the study of how the body responds to stress, physical and emotional. In terms of its relation to back pain, we will consider the physical effects of ergonomics.

When your mother told you to sit up straight, that was an adjustment of your ergonomics. But when it comes to your office and mom not being around, you need to learn how to set up your office space to encourage you to sit up in a manner that supports your spine and back.

The Chair

For most of us, we simply go to the cube or desk to which we are assigned and sit in the chair that’s already there.

But this can be the beginning of back pain for many people.

The chair that you are sitting in may not be adjusted to the specifications that are right for your body. And by simply adjusting your body to the chair, you can be increasing the likelihood of back pain and back troubles.

The chair should be something that should adjust to your specific body type. If the chair can not be adjusted properly, your employer should be able to get you another chair that can adjust properly.

If you have a work safety department (and you should), try to find out who you can have come to your desk for a desk area ergonomics consultation. This person will be able to come to your desk and help you arrange your desk in a healthy manner.

The chair that you have should be able to:

• Allow you to sit up straight
• Allow you lumbar support to create a natural curve in the spine
• Allow your head to rest on the back and upright
• Allow your knees to rest beneath your desk without pain
• Allow your feet to be flat on the ground or on a foot rest if not
• Adjust up and down to help with movement
• Allow you to move from one area to another without shifting the adjustments on the chair
• Place your arms flat on the arm rests and in line with your desk

Typically, a good office chair that promotes healthy back health is going to cost a fair amount of money – around $500 or more. But when the employer realizes that you will not call off for back pain because you have a healthy office environment, this is generally enough incentive to get you the proper equipment.

Workspace

If you work at a computer like so many people do, you will want to adjust certain things in your workspace so that your posture is appropriate for protecting your back.

• Place the monitor lower than your eye line
This will help keep your neck relaxed and your eyes from becoming too strained. Of course, you don’t want to bend down to see your monitor as this will harm your neck and back.

• Place your keyboard directly in front of you
Your forearms should be straight when you are typing, with a gentle bend in your wrists as they sit on the edge of the keyboard or an ergonomic wrist rest.

• Your mouse should be within reach
And aligned in the same manner as your keyboard so that your wrists aren’t bending and you don’t have to lean over.

• Keep things that you need within reach
If you have items you use every day, be sure to have them in places where you don’t have to reach too far, straining your back. Things that you don’t need on a daily basis can be stored off of your desk or in a separate location altogether.

• Keep heavy things in healthy areas
If you need to use heavy items, be sure that you don’t have to strain to pick them up and pull them to the area where you are.

• Make sure to get up every hour
The more you get your body out of your chair, the healthier your back will be. Be sure to get up to walk around from time to time.

Some people also find that using an exercise ball as their desk chair can help them with lower back pain, but you will need to find one that’s tall enough to reach your computer – which can be difficult to do.

This ball makes you engage your abdominal muscles so that your back is automatically supported.

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Tip 4 – Drinking More Water Can Help Preventing Back Pain

Relief For Lower Back Pain

Though the benefits of water have been touted for everything from weight loss to boosting your immune system, water can also help you prevent back pain.

Because the muscles of the body require water in order to function at their highest capacity, you need to make sure you are preventing dehydration from happening.

But the amount of water you need will vary from person to person. Those who are larger in size and who have more muscles will require more water to function properly. Those who are smaller will not need as much water in their bodies.

There are a few easy ways to tell if you are drinking enough water:

• You aren’t thirsty
• Your lips aren’t dry or chapped
• Your urine is a pale yellow
• You are urinating every two hours

You can drink plain water to help boost your hydration, but you can also choose from the many caffeine free drinks that are available too – juices, decaffeinated coffee, etc.

Certain foods also contain a large amount of water (watermelon, cucumbers, and corn), so these will also count toward your levels of hydration.

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Tip 3 – How To Prevent Back Pain Injury When Lifting And Moving Heavy Objects

Prevent Back Pain Injury

Many of us have hurt our backs when we were lifting or moving something that was heavier than our muscles were accustomed to. We inadvertently strained our muscles, which can take a long time to heal if the injury was severe enough.

But there are ways we can prevent these kinds of injuries in the future:

• Always lift with your knees – Instead of thinking of lifting things with your arms and your upper body, focus on your knees and legs when you lift something heavy. The larger muscles in your lower body can more easily adapt to heavier weights.

• Be sure to push instead of pull – If you have to move something that’s heavy, be sure to push the object (if you can) instead of pull it. Because pushing uses more lower body strength, you will reduce the stress on your back and neck.

• Hold in your abdominals – Whenever you are lifting or moving something, be sure to pull in your abdominal muscles to protect your back. It will help if you take in a deep breath as you do so.

• Get help – Instead of lifting something that you shouldn’t be lifting, maybe you should ask a friend to help you lighten the weight on your back and your body.

• Avoid twisting as you lift – When lifting something heavy, be sure to move up and down in a straight line. This will help you protect the smaller muscles and ligaments in your back.

• Hold the object close you – Instead of holding something far away, be sure to hold the item closer to your body, it helps to create a healthier balance.

• Never lift anything above shoulder level – You aren’t as balanced at this height and you can cause a lot of damage to your back.

As you decide that you need to move something heavier, you need to create a plan for how you will move it BEFORE you start to lift. This will help you plan for any troubles and decide whether you need to enlist more help than you might have on hand.

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Tip 2 On How To Prevent Back and Neck Pain – Start With Exercising

How To Prevent Back and Neck Pain

Since your back and neck are supported by the muscles in your body, it only makes sense that the stronger those muscles are, the more likely they will support your body and prevent back and neck pain.

To support your lower back, you will want to focus on abdominal training. A simple abdominal workout should include exercises for each of the major muscle groups:

Upper ABs – Basic Crunches

• Lay on your back with your hands crossed on your chest.
• Place your feet flat on the floor with your knees bent.
• Slowly lift your chest up toward the ceiling, keeping your chin pointed to the ceiling.
• Lift a few inches from the ground, hold for a second and then lower slowly to the ground.

Lower ABs – Reverse Crunches

• Lay on your back your arms at your sides
• Lift your legs up with your knees bent and feet off the floor
• Focusing on your lower abs, lift your buttocks off the floor slowly, keeping the rest of your body
in place
• Slowly lower down

Oblique Muscles – Side Crunches

• Lay on your right side with your knees bent
• Support your head with your right arm and bring the left hand to your head
• Crunch toward your legs with the left leg, using the left elbow to guide the movement, lower
down.
• Switch sides

You can repeat these exercises daily or every other day to help increase your abdominal strength and thus reduce your back pain.

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