Walking for Low Back Pain

walking for low back pain

Walking for Low Back Pain

 

Did you know that walking for low back pain is the best self-treatment?

 

More people are unfortunately living sedentary lives and thus are becoming more prone to low back pain due to lack of physical activity. While issues like this help keep us busy at our clinic locations, we also love to see our patients without unnecessary back issues.

The old stereotypes of bed-rest and sitting in a recliner for low back pain are history. Clinical practice guidelines generally advise people with an acute episode of low back pain to stay active.

 

Why walking for low back pain?

 

back pain walking can helpThe American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons notes that exercising for 10 to 30 minutes one to three times per day is recommended during recovery from a bout with low back pain.

Walking is much less intense than many other forms of exercise and thus less likely to aggravate your back pain. It is also a particularly good form of exercise because it is less likely to damage the joints than other activities and helps maintain bone density.

Walking for low back pain works because it stimulates the brain to release serotonin and endorphins, which are neurotransmitter chemicals that make you feel better physically and mentally.

 

Benefits of walking for low back pain

 

walking shoes for back painA steady walking practice can lessen pain, hasten healing, boost strength, increase flexibility and core strength, and, in the long run, prevent recurrences of low back pain.

Walking strengthens your bones and muscles, including those in your feet, legs, hips and torso along with the core muscles that hold you upright.

Stretching before walking will improve your back’s flexibility, range of motion and posture, which can help prevent future back pain or reduce its severity.

Incorporating walking into your routine also helps to improve your spine’s strength; walking benefits your circulation, helping pump nutrients to tissue and drain toxins, which nourishes your spine.

 

How to start a walking regimen

 

walk trails shoesPurchase athletic walking shoes that fit your feet correctly and feel comfortable. If you’re in physical discomfort with your footwear, you’re not going to want to go very far. Don’t abandon your new routine before it even starts with ill-fitting shoes.

Make sure you stretch before exercising. Use some gentle stretching techniques to stretch your neck, arms, hips, legs, hamstrings, and ankles.

Start out slow and easy, take breaks if necessary. Be prepared for some discomfort — at first. Walking will help build your endurance and core strength over time. Be patient and persistent.

When you walk, keep up a rapid pace but do not exercise to the point of breathlessness. You should be able to carry on a conversation without gasping for air. Begin with a slow five-minute walk and continue until you’re walking for at least 30 minutes, or 2 miles, three or four times a week.

Make sure to maintain correct posture to prevent further injury to your back — use your core muscles. Try to “suck in” your tummy so you’re more upright. Swing your arms and keep your hands relaxed.

Once you’re into a routine, you can incorporate hand and ankle weights into your walks to get more strength and cardio endurance.

 

Walk off the low back pain

 

fitness walksWhile it can be difficult to motivate yourself to keep moving despite your back pain, the results should be less pain and discomfort along with faster recovery.

One of the best advantages to establishing a walking routine for low back pain is that it doesn’t require a doctor, a physical therapist, or any fancy equipment to do.

You’ll also garner other wonderful health benefits from walking such as weight loss, decreased depression symptoms, and better sleep.

 

Originally published on Ohio Therapy Centers


We can help you with any acute or chronic back pain issues!
Schedule your appointment now – free consultation for new patients and same day appointments available in some cases!

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sleeping osteoarthritis pain

9 Ways to Sleep Better with Osteoarthritis Pain

As if it’s not enough that your osteoarthritis bothers you throughout the day, pain and stiffness can also interrupt your ability to get a good night’s sleep.

This is bad news because poor sleep can cause pain to be worse—this creates a damaging cycle of pain and poor sleep.

If osteoarthritis pain and stiffness are keeping you from falling asleep or staying asleep, try following these 9 tips:

 

1 – Use heat therapy before bed

Ease a painful joint by using a heating pad for 15 to 20 minutes before bed. Or take a soothing bath for the same effect—just give yourself time to cool down afterward, because it’s hard to get to sleep if you’re overheated.

2 – Explore medication solutions

Insomnia and sleep problems may be the result of a medication you are taking to treat osteoarthritis pain or another condition. Talk with your doctor about switching medications or adjusting the timing of when you take them.

You may also be a good candidate for a prescription medication specifically to address insomnia. These medications can be very helpful but can be habit-forming and need to be taken with care.

3 – Take a nighttime pain reliever

There are several formulations of over-the-counter pain relievers specifically intended for use in at night to both relieve osteoarthritis pain and help you sleep better.

4 – Consider your mattress

A good mattress can make a big difference in your level of comfort and support as you sleep. For those with osteoarthritis, your mattress should be supportive but not too hard. If you can’t invest in a new mattress right now, consider adding a mattress topper.

5 – Use pillows strategically

Where and what type of pillows you use at night is important. If you have neck (cervical) arthritis, use a standard pillow that’s firm but not too high. For hip or knee arthritis, you may benefit from a wedge pillow next to you or a small pillow between your knees.

6 – Rule out sleep apnea

Those who are overweight or obese are at increased risk for both osteoarthritis and a sleep condition called sleep apnea, which causes patients to stop breathing and wake up abruptly several times a night. If you suspect you may have sleep apnea, talk with your doctor about undergoing a sleep study.

7 – Exercise and stretch

Your joints are meant to move—the more you keep them immobile, the stiffer and more painful they’ll become. Stay as active as you can and do stretches intended to maintain strength and range of motion in your osteoarthritis-affected joint.

8 – Practice good sleep hygiene

Follow habits that promote good sleep, such as:

  • Going to bed at the same time every night
  • Establishing a night routine to prepare your mind and body for sleep
  • Banning phones, TVs, and other electronics from the bedroom
  • Avoiding large meals and caffeine before bed

9 – Manage your osteoarthritis or other health conditions

The better your overall health, the less likely conditions like arthritis or others will disrupt your sleep.

Remember: osteoarthritis, chronic pain, and sleep problems are all treatable. If you’re struggling with poor sleep because of osteoarthritis pain, make an appointment to see us and explore your solutions.

Original article: Arthritis Health

 


If you’re suffering from osteoarthritis, come see us to find out about your options for treatment. Under our care, your treatment may include spinal adjustments, physical rehab, clinical massage, and stretching and strengthening exercises. We can also recommend natural, drug-free ways to control your pain and discomfort.

If you would like more information about our services and treatments available please contact us today!

Atlantic Medical Group

330-456-3487


Back Pain

5 Ways to Help Stop Back Pain

Roughly 8 out of 10 people suffer from back pain at some point during their lives.

Women, in particular, are prone to posture and back problems—thanks to toting around outrageously heavy purses, going through pregnancy, or giving one-hip rides to kids. Whether you’re in the midst of fighting the ache or just want to prevent it, here are some expert-endorsed quick-and-easy ways to wage your war on back pain.

Pass the broccoli, please

broccoli vitamin k atlantic medical group cantonYou know that calcium is key for strong bones, but Japanese researchers have identified something else you need: vitamin K. It’s believed that the vitamin, found in broccoli, spinach, and other dark leafy greens, helps calcium deposit in the bones, making them denser. The stronger your bones, the stronger your whole body—and the lower your chances of an injury that could cause back pain.

Lighten your load

If your purse or briefcase tips the scales at more than 10% of your weight, it’s too heavy. And you need to carry it right. Your best bet is a model with a long strap that lets you position it across your chest like a messenger bag.
Can’t part with your shorter-strapped number? Switch shoulders every 20 minutes.

Sleep right

more sleep back painA harder bed may not be better for your back. A recent study in Spine found that people who slept on softer beds reported less lower-back pain than those who snoozed on harder ones. 

Pillows? Yours shouldn’t raise your head out of alignment with your spine. How to tell: If you’re a back sleeper, your chin shouldn’t press into your chest. If you’re a side sleeper, it shouldn’t curve up toward your shoulder.

Tighten those abs

pelvic tilt coreHaving strong core muscles (we’re talking abs here) can help protect your back from injury. Do this core-strengthening pelvic tilt 2 to 3 times per week: Lie on your back with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and lower back flattened. Pull in your belly button toward your spine, contracting your abs; your pelvis should lift slightly off the floor. 

Do 2 to 3 sets of 12 reps.

Aim for good posture

back pain desk postureSitting at a desk for eight (or more) hours a day can really do a number on your back. Make sure to sit with your back against your chair (get a lumbar pillow if your chair doesn’t allow this) and both feet flat on the floor.
Another option: Try using a stability ball as your desk chair—good posture is a must just to stay on the thing. Start off slow (20 minutes at a time), and if it feels good, stick with it.

 

Originally seen on Health

 

These 5 Tips not enough? 

Call today to alleviate your back pain and get your life back! 

Atlantic Medical Group

330-456-3487


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