Prioritising your Back Health in FIVE Easy Steps
Back pain is more common than you’d think. Recent data shows that 80% of the nation will experience back pain at some point in their lifetime. This Chiropractic Awareness Week (4-10 April), we’re encouraging Brits to take back their back health.
Did you know there’s currently 10 million people in the UK living with back pain? Research from the British Chiropractic Association found that cases of back pain rose by a third during the pandemic and resulting lockdowns. Despite this increase, only 10% of people experiencing symptoms sought support from a GP or chiropractor, with 46% of people not taking any steps at all to tackle their back pain. This indicates that a large portion of the population is still living with daily symptoms into 2022.
These numbers may seem high, but you can take simple steps to help this. As part of your daily routine you can reduce the symptoms and the risk of developing a more challenging musculoskeletal condition.
Five Top Tips to Support your Back Health
- Start the day right and keep on moving: Physical activity can be beneficial for managing back pain. Aim to incorporate at least 30minutes of movement into your day. If this movement is moderate or high intensity, be sure to warm up first. If a previous injury is causing you pain, adapt your exercise or seek some advice. Activities such as swimming, walking or yoga can be less demanding on your body, while keeping you mobile!
- Take a break: If you sit for long periods of time as part of your job, ensure you stand up and move around every 30 minutes. This is important if you work from home or work hybrid because you may not have the ergonomic office equipment.
- Lifting and carrying: Will you be taking on spring-cleaning or DIY projects this Easter? If so, remember to bend from the knees, not the waist when lifting heavy items. Face in the direction of movement and take your time. Hold the object as close to your body as possible. where you can avoid carrying objects which are too heavy to manage alone, ask for help or use the necessary equipment.
- Sleep comfortably: The Sleep Council recommends buying a new mattress at least every seven years. Mattresses lose their support over time. Can you feel the springs through your mattress? Is your mattress no longer level? Then it is no longer providing the support you need. Everyone has different support requirements, so when purchasing your mattress ensure it is supportive for you. If you share a bed and require different mattress types, consider two single mattresses. They can be designed to be joined together, to ensure you both get the support you need.
- Seek out support: Have your symptoms of back or joint pain lasted more than two weeks? Do symptoms prevent you from carrying out daily routines? Yes? See a chiropractor or GP for advice.
This Chiropractic Awareness Week, we also wanted to answer a few of the most common myths and misconceptions around chiropractic treatment:
- “Chiropractic is just cracking backs” = MYTH. In the UK, chiropractic is a regulated profession. Chiropractors provide patients with a wealth of treatments; spinal adjustment being just one. There’s no one fit approach and every patient’s plan is treated individually – many will never hear a crack or popping sound. The crack or popping sound that’s produced from a spinal manipulation comes from a small pocket of air being released between the joints. It’s generated by something called a cavitation.
- “Chiropractors are massage therapists with a different name” = MYTH. Chiropractors are extensively trained to diagnose, treat, manage and prevent disorders of the musculoskeletal system.
- “Chiropractic leads to a dependence on treatment, rather than solving the problem” = MYTH. The goal of a chiropractor is always to create a bespoke work and care plan for each patient. The aim is to get the problem of their pain and solve it in the safest and most efficient way possible.
Maintaining Good Back Health
Feeling physically well positively impacts every aspect of how we live our day-to-day life. Therefore, maintaining good back health is extremely important. We want to raise awareness and show that anyone can be proactive about their back health this Chiropractic Awareness Week!
Easy changes can make a significant difference. If your pain doesn’t reduce or is prolonged, you should always see a health professional for further guidance. To book an appointment with me, click here.