Everyone wants to have great spine health, but it’s easier said than done. That being said, there are some things you can do on a daily basis that can improve your spine health without greatly changing your regular routine. In today’s blog, we spotlight some ways you can improve your spine health with a few small changes to your daily habits.
Small Changes For Big Back Improvements
Here’s a look at a number of things you can do on a daily basis to improve your spine health:
Walk – Walking is a great low-impact exercise that can improve your spine health. Aside from helping pump healthy blood to crucial spine structures and decompressing your spine, walking also helps us maintain bone density. You don’t need any special equipment in order to do more walking each day, just make a few small changes. Take the stairs at work, or go for a walk around the block with your kids.
Staying Hydrated – If you’re dehydrated, you’re more likely to pull or strain a muscle in your spine. Staying hydrated also helps to remove waste products and carry healthy nutrients to the spine. Invest in a water bottle and keep it with you throughout the day. For an approximate amount, take your weight, cut it in half and try to consume at least that many ounces of water each day.
Ditch Tobacco – Tobacco products have been linked to numerous health issues, but it can also seriously affect your spine health. Smoking inhibits blood flow and can speed up spinal disc degeneration. There are hundreds of reasons to give up tobacco products, and your spine health is one of them.
Staying Centered And Balanced – What we mean by this is that you should try to keep your head positioned directly over your shoulders throughout the day. It’s easy to lean forward while you’re working on a computer or during your commute, but this will only put more stress on your cervical spine. Similarly, be cognizant about how you carry products on your shoulders and back. Make sure if you’re carrying bags, purses or backpacks that weight is equally distributed along across your spine and shoulders so that one area isn’t overstressed.
Your Diet – Your diet also plays a critical role in the health of your spine. Unhealthy junk food options can contribute to the onset of spinal inflammation, which can lead to soft tissue compression and pain. Similarly, excess weight puts more stress on your spine with each step you take, meaning discs will break down sooner. You don’t need to eat perfectly for every meal, but strive to make some healthy choices and maintain an ideal weight to do right by your spine.
Stop Small Problems – A final way to improve the health of your spine is to take care of small issues before they get worse. Whether that means shutting down your normal workout routine for a week or heading into a doctor’s office for an evaluation, make sure you are actively treating small problems before they turn into a big issue. If you’re not sure what you’re dealing with, we’d be happy to provide you with a diagnosis and treatment plan.
For more tips, or for help with your back issue, reach out to Dr. Chang’s office today.