Living with back pain can become a struggle for anyone.  Whether you tweaked it during a physical activity or suffer from a degenerative condition, it can sometimes be life altering and other times it is just a minor inconvenience.  Here are some effective ways to combat pain at home:

1. Keep the spine loose and active-The body itself is supposed to be active all the time and the spine is no exception. It is important to continue your daily regimen, take out the garbage, walk the dog, vacuum, etc.  It is important that if you are experiencing significant pain to go at your own pace. Walk instead of run, or run 2 miles instead of 5 if you have been feeling soreness.  Once the soreness has subsided, regular aerobic exercises like swimming, bicycling and walking can keep you mobile and loose.

2. Stretch often-Sometimes the daily routine isn’t filled with as much active movement as you would like and sitting motionless in a desk chair for several hours will not help the pain subside.  Those who work sedentary jobs should get up every 20 minutes or so and stretch. Walk to get a glass of water or coffee and don’t forget to also stretch your legs out as well. 

3. Strengthen your core and back- If you are prone to intermittent back pain, you can help limit future episodes by strengthening the muscles that support your lower back.  Having strong hip, pelvic, and abdominal muscles provides the back with more muscular support which can help better defend against back pain. 

4. Maintain a back-friendly work environment- Design your desk or work-space so you don’t have to bend your neck to see your computer monitor or reach out for your mouse. Find a monitor that adjusts to your specific height and use a desk that you can comfortably rest your arms on. These are important factors to back pain but often get overlooked.

5. Always watch your posture-If you work in an office, find a desk chair that you can sit back comfortably in. If you find yourself needing to slouch to be comfortable, it is time for a new chair. If you have a more active job, be careful of your posture when lifting heavy objects. Never bend over from the waist. Instead, bend and straighten from the knees.

If these helpful tips are not helping with back and neck pain and the pain becomes chronic, it is important to contact Metropolitan Neurosurgery. Our practice is dedicated to providing the finest possible care and they are on the cutting edge of technological advances in brain and spine surgery.