To Your Health
August, 2009 (Vol. 03, Issue 08)
4. Avoid Unhealthy Lifestyle Habits
Stress. Emotional stress can cause muscle tension, which can lead to back pain (it also can lead to heart problems, chemical imbalances, an inability to sleep and a host of other bad things).
It's always hard to maintain balance in your life between work, family and play, but it goes a long way toward helping your emotional stress.
Reducing stress can be as simple as scheduling some quiet time to be alone, doing yoga or meditation, taking a bath or just sitting and doing breathing exercises. Whatever activity you find relaxing or energizing, take time to do it. Down time allows you to unplug from the world and get grounded. It also allows your body to reset itself so you can deal with the next crisis or problem that's sure to arise.
Poor nutrition. Watching what you eat is another important factor to consider, because excess weight literally "weighs you down," which can contribute to back pain. Quite simply, losing excess weight in a healthy manner will take pressure off your lower back and reduce stress on the vertebrae.
It is truly amazing that our society is now making an active transition from listening to symptoms or pain to preventative health care. Now is the time for you to be able to take a more active role in deciding how your future health will play out. Armed with the tips discussed above, you can make changes now that will help your back and your overall well-being for years to come. The power of health is in your hands.
The Back Pain Epidemic
Back pain has become an epidemic in our modern society - up to 85 percent of all people will experience back pain at some time in their life, and it is the fifth most common reason for all physician visits in the United States. According to the statistics, if you're in a room with three other people, one of you has suffered low back pain for an entire day or more in the previous three months and only one of you (if they're lucky) will avoid suffering back pain at some point in their lifetime.
Kevin M. Wong, DC, a 1996 graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic West in San Jose, Calif., practices full-time in Orinda, Calif. He is also an instructor for Foot Levelers, Inc.