You’re a happy and productive freelancer who works from home… You’re having a great day, when your pencil falls off your desk. You reach for it, and then… Baaam! Pain. Your back gives out. Has this happened to you?
Working from home comes with many benefits and luxuries, but it doesn’t mean one becomes immune to bouts of back spasms or pain. The dangers of sitting behind a desk are many. And back problems are among them. The best cure for your back giving out? Preventing it from happening in the first place.
Here are 5 tips to keep your back in good shape and prevent spasms from occurring.
- Build a strong body.
You should aim to build your core muscles, which are the muscles in your abdomen, your lower back, hips, and pelvis. Your core muscles stabilize your movements and help you have better posture. Every movement your body undertakes connects to your body’s core at some point. Strengthen your core, and you strengthen the range of movements your back is able to safely perform without pain. This is the first line of defense against back problems.
- Get a massage.
Massage has been proven to be an effective method for relieving and treating pain, as well as aiding in muscle recovery. A very simple explanation for how it helps with back pain is as follows: Trigger points are groups of knots that are painful to the touch. Massaging such points result in relief and a better range of motion. If and when trigger point areas are left unattended, this can lead to further complications and a limited range of motion. That’s a pretty decent reason to treat yourself to a back massage, right?
- Eat anti-inflammatory foods.
Sometimes, back spasms occur due to joint inflammation. In order to prevent this type of back problem from occurring, head it off by making anti-inflammatory foods a part of your diet. Tomatoes, spinach, olive oil, salmon, almonds, and walnuts all have anti-inflammatory properties. As do some fairly yummy sources, such as strawberries, cherries, oranges, and blueberries. Eating these types of foods will aid your body in fighting inflammation.
- Stay at a healthy weight.
Being excessively overweight can cause unnecessary strain on your joints and bones. Which can further lead to sprained ligaments and back problems. If you are outside of a recommended healthy weight target, consider what steps you can take to slowly bring yourself back to a safer weight. Take walks. Moderate your eating habits. Do not set unrealistic goals, which could just push you into further bad habits. Make sure that you start with goals that are simple and easily obtainable at first. Then build on your successes.
- Go see a chiropractor.
If you feel minor twinges in your back that are not solved by the previous steps, go see a chiropractor. While it is rare for back pains to be the result of a tumor, a small percentage of the time this turns out to be the cause. A chiropractor or family doctor will be able to give you X-rays and help you determine what might be ailing your back. If all is well, and it is simply a matter of misalignment, a chiropractor will provide relief and counsel on how to maintain better back health.
Being laid up for weeks at a time due to a back that has gone out is no fun. For many of us with jobs and families that need caring for, being out for the count is not an option. Therefore, taking preventative steps to ensure back health is an important step that we should give proper attention to.
It can be difficult to find time for things that are not glaringly pressing. But if we consider the alternative, maybe we’ll be more inclined to do our part and invest in our future health and happiness.