1. Stretch and strengthen the back
Motivated patients often maintain a steady regimen of targeted stretching and strengthening, which is key to long-term success in managing and controlling spine pain.
2. Maintain a healthy weight
Excessive weight can place undue physical stress on the spine. Also, excess weight can often result in additional diseases or physical conditions that may further impair the spine or intensify existing issues.
3. Don’t Smoke
Nicotine is a vasoconstrictor—it tightens blood vessels, reducing blood flow and limiting oxygen and nutrition to the spine. Vasoconstriction can accelerate inflammation and degradation within the spine and throughout the body.
4. Reduce or eliminate inflammatory foods
Avoid a diet of inflammation-causing dairy, red meats, refined sugar, and other processed foods. Opt instead for healthy anti-inflammatory food choices, such as plant-based foods that are also naturally low in calories and help to discourage excessive weight gain.
5. Take care with heavy lifting
The act of bending to lift a heavy load places a large strain on the spine. Use correct technique when lifting: Keep the back straight, bend the knees, and recruit the power of the legs to complete the lift.