15 Things You Can Do To Keep Your Spine Healthy

Doctor holding a spine model demonstrating spine health

In our daily life, we often overlook the crucial parts of our bodies until they start causing problems. Although spine health is of utmost importance, many people don’t give much thought to it until they start having back pain.  

Having a healthy spine minimizes the risk of having back pain, diminished flexibility, and difficulty walking. This article features 15 tips for maintaining your spinal health. As you read this, please note that, like most diseases, there are risk factors that we can control (modifiable risk factors) and risk factors that we cannot control. As such, while we can do everything possible to keep our spines healthy, we might still suffer from spine problems for many reasons that are either out of our control, like genetics, or even for reasons that are yet to be discovered. If you enjoy reading this article, you will also enjoy my articles 10 Facts you might not know about your spinal cord and 10 Facts you might not know about your spine.

Why Does Your Spine Health Matter?

A healthy spine is your body’s primary structural support system that helps you walk, bend, twist, stand, and sit. Keeping your spine healthy is important for maintaining your body’s essential functions. It is the spine that maintains the upright posture and allows your body to move without pain. 

Poor spinal health hinders your body’s ability to get up, walk, or bend over, resulting in back pain or neck pain. Moreover, an injured spine can also cause neurologic issues by compressing nerves or even the spinal cord. Therefore, maintaining your spine health is crucial for avoiding back problems and maintaining a good quality of life.  

15 Things You Can Do To Keep Your Spine Healthy:

Like other body parts, your spine also deserves to be taken care of. This section includes different lifestyle tactics and practices that can preserve long-term spine health.

1. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Being overweight puts additional stress on your spine. This increases the risk of straining your lower back. Shedding excess pounds can help strengthen your spine and make your spine more resilient. 

2. Lift Weight Properly

Lifting heavy objects improperly or without supporting your spine can lead to painful muscle sprains. Make sure to use your legs to lift weight rather than your back. When lifting heavy objects, it is best to keep your back as straight as possible and stand as close as possible to the object you’re lifting. 

3. Make Exercise A Lifestyle Choice

Exercise is crucial in maintaining spine health and repairing an injured spine. Exercising at least three or four times a week goes a long way towards:

  • Maintaining strong back muscles
  • Increasing joint flexibility 
  • Good blood circulation in back muscles
    • Reducing inflammation
    • Nutrient distribution to soft tissues and spine discs 

4. Eat Your Way to a Strong Spine 

A healthy diet has been shown to reduce the risk of chronic disorders like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. Further, a healthy diet maintains a healthy weight, which reduces pressure on the spine and lessens the risk of spine injury. While I am in no position to comment on what a healthy diet looks like. In general, try eating foods found in nature that are minimally or not processed and try to maintain a reasonably low caloric intake. 

5. Get Enough Sleep and Practice Good Sleep Posture

Getting enough sleep is crucial for good health and, therefore, crucial for good spine health. our back also needs to rest, recuperate, and regenerate after a hectic day. Sleep is the time to give your spine the rest it deserves. Make sure to sleep in a good position. 

6. Upgrade Your Mattress

Ever experienced back pain in the morning? An inadequate mattress may be the source of your back pain. Try sleeping on a mattress that provides support to your spine, thus maintaining its natural, straight alignment. 

7. Ergonomically Correct Workspace.

Practicing good ergonomics supports the lower and upper back by reducing extra stress. Adjusting your chair to your ideal level of height, keeping your laptop at eye level, taking short breaks from work, and avoiding sitting in the same position are some workspace adjustments that are easy to implement. Here are some https://egonomics.blog to learn about ergonomics.

8. Stay Hydrated

Excessive dehydration in the body shrinks the intervertebral discs. Certain painful disc conditions can arise from dehydration, such as herniated discs. Proper hydration maintains fluidity in the joints and preserves soft tissue elasticity. 

9. Watch Your Posture

Maintaining a good posture is pivotal to protecting your spine. You should sit, stand, lie, and walk in positions where less pressure and stress are exerted on the spine. 

10. Wear Appropriate Footwear

You can maintain good body alignment by wearing comfortable shoes. Properly cushioned shoes with a supportive arch support the spine and lower back, thus giving your body a strong foundation. 

11. Reevaluate Your Sitting Posture

Sitting for prolonged periods increases the pressure on the spinal column. Take short breaks between work and walking around to provide support to your spine.

12. Exercise in a Pool

If you are already experiencing some spine pain. Exercising in a swimming pool puts less pressure on your spine by reducing the downward stress of gravity. The buoyancy of the water aids in supporting your spinal column and can help you get the benefits of exercising without putting increasing the stress on your spine.  

13. Create A Walking Program

Want to support your spine in a gentle way but don’t have access to a pool? Another option is to develop a walking program or start with a few walks daily because walking:

  • Strengthens your bone structure and core muscles
  • Improves balance 
  • Improves spinal flexibility

14. Massage Therapy can also help you keep a healthy spine

Massage therapy can improve your spine health along with other benefits like:

  • Improved endorphin levels
  • Restored range of motion of the spine
  • Improved blood circulation

15. Manage stress

Keeping your stress levels in check is also essential for spine and overall health. Stress has been reported to cause neck and back problems. Reducing stress levels can help relieve stress-related back problems. 

The Bottom Line

A healthy spine plays a vital role in supporting your skeleton and promoting your body’s ability to move, sit, and stand. All the habits mentioned above can help keep your spine in good health. If you notice any signs of back pain, do not forget to visit your doctor or general practitioner. 

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