A few rules for a healthy spine
Many chronic problems of the spine result from mistakes we make in our everyday functioning, often without even realizing it.
There may be many causes of spinal pain syndromes - all of them are closely related to static and dynamic loads that arise during everyday life - at work, while shopping or taking care of children. By following a few principles during your daily activities, you can avoid overloading your musculoskeletal system and prevent pain from developing in your spine.
For centuries, the human body has been adapted to perform ergonomic work according to specific movement patterns. Unfortunately, the technological progress has changed the way we live and work, and as a result, our movement patterns have been disrupted. This problem largely affects people living in big cities, as cars and public transport have replaced walking, elevators have replaced climbing stairs, and the phone and the Internet limit movement related to the need to communicate with others. The increasingly sedentary work pattern has resulted in overload lesions of the spine occurring in very young people. Preventive principles should be instilled and followed from an early age to reduce the risk of developing pain syndromes.
Here are some daily rules
for a healthy spine:
While sitting, your spine should be in a neutral position, your hip joints and knee joints should be bent at a 90-degree angle, and your elbows should be resting on the tabletop. In short - try not to hunch and slump your shoulders.
A particularly common mistake is putting your head forward.
This position overloads the cervical vertebrae and is a direct route to the formation of cervical discopathy. You should also pay attention to this while driving a car.
CARRY WEIGHTS WITH CARE
Lifting heavy objects should be done with bent knees and a neutral spine while maintaining a physiological lumbar lordosis. Incorrect lifting on a "rounded back" increases the load on the lumbar spine joints more than threefold.
The load on the spinal joints in the lumbar and sacral regions increases more than threefold. When this happens, the intervertebral disc often slips out, commonly referred to as "disc prolapse".
CHANGE POSITIONS FREQUENTLY
The basic activity during the break at work should be a change of position. It is recommended to take short walks, e.g. around the room or up the stairs, which has a beneficial effect on the circulatory system and prevents swelling of the lower limbs. After sitting for an hour, you should take a break to relax your neck muscles, do some breathing exercises and activate your abdominal muscles. Sitting on a gym ball while working will also be beneficial, but it should be used alternately with an ergonomic chair.
LIMIT WEARING HIGH HEELS
The wearing of high-heeled shoes by women causes trismus in the joints of the lower limb (ankle joint, knee joint and hip joint), an increase in the anterior tilt of the pelvis and overloading of the sacro-lumbar spine. All these changes can cause pain in the spine.
In everyday life, it is advisable to choose flat-heeled shoes, or stilettos with a wider heel up to 5 cm high. You should also choose shoes with oval tops, and avoid those with pointed toes.
GET SOME SLEEP
It is accepted that an adult person should sleep 8 hours a day, but it should be remembered that each body is different when it comes to the need for nightly rest. The more stressed a person is, the more time they need to regenerate.
It is worth taking care of the right mattress, which should not be too hard or too soft. A mattress that is too firm causes tension in the neck and lumbar region, whereas one that is too soft puts strain on the entire spine.
A pillow is also important - sometimes changing to an ergonomic model reduces neck and neck pain. It is also very important to avoid getting out of bed quickly after waking up, so it is worth taking a minute to do some gymnastics - even if it is only to stretch - to prepare your spine for the loads.
In addition to regular scheduled physical activity, we perform many physical activities throughout the day during which we expend energy and burn calories. These activities are referred to as NEAT, or non-exercise activity thermogenesis. The more we move, the better our body functions - blood circulation improves, metabolism speeds up, stress is reduced and mood improves. We can increase NEAT by taking the stairs instead of the elevator, parking the car further from the entrance to the store, getting off at an earlier stop, and remembering to take active breaks during work.
It should be remembered that prevention is better than cure, so education on the subject and early prevention is important. Its aim is to reduce the effects of the adverse impact of already formed movement stereotypes and to learn to function properly in everyday activities.
Your spine will be grateful!