When you look back on 2014, was part or most of the year spent dealing with aches and pains? Other than the common cold, back pain sends more people to the doctor than any other condition. Living with less pain can be an attainable goal. Add these resolutions for a pain-free year to your list and vow to have a healthier year while managing your pain.
- Make sleep a priority: Over time, lack of sleep can lead to serious health risks. Invest in a supportive pillow and mattress to help your body take full advantage of restorative sleep. Create a sleep environment that promotes comfort and relaxation to ensure the best night of sleep possible. Adequate, quality sleep helps improve mood and personal performance, cardiovascular health, and recovery time from injuries, to name a few positive effects.
- Be active: There are numerous exercises that can protect the spine in different ways. Maintaining a regular workout routine can help prevent future injuries while also helping you feel more productive and energized throughout the day. Focusing on exercises that strengthen the abdominal muscles will support and protect your spine. Cardio exercises will aid in losing weight that can drag down muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the lower back. Follow these tips to stay active throughout the day.
- Create a spine-healthy, ergonomic workspace: 33% of work-related injuries are caused by poor work station setup. Sitting for long periods of time takes a toll on our bodies. Back, neck, and shoulder pain can be avoided with a proper ergonomic workspace. Resolve to end these aches and pains by creating a space that allows for maximum flexibility, comfort, movement, and productivity.
- Stay hydrated: Water is vital when it comes to the spine. Over time, our spinal discs can shrink if they do not get enough water. This results in an increased likelihood of ruptures or bulges due to less “padding”. Staying hydrated will also help with concentration, digestion, and injury prevention.Aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces throughout the day. For example, if you weigh 130 lbs. aim to drink at least 65 oz. per day.
- Stress less: From anxiety, depression, physical pain, and chest pain, stress can present itself in many different ways. These tips to relax and de-stress can help reduce the negative effects stress has on the body and mind and improve your overall quality of life.
Physical inactivity is the fourth leading cause of deaths worldwide. Some reports have estimated American adults spend roughly 55% of their time being inactive. This is a key risk factor for diseases such as cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, and obesity. Staying on top of your healthy habits while working at the office or at home can be hard. While we may set goals in the morning to take breaks and walk around during the day or workout during our lunch break, it isn’t uncommon to get lost in work and before we know it the day is over.
From tracking your water intake to sending reminders to take a break from the computer, these apps can help you be on your way to a pain-free and productive workday while staying on top of your health goals:
- Healthier: Break Reminder and Time Out: By periodically reminding you to take a break from your computer, these apps will help increase productivity and reduce health risks. Using Windows? Download Rest Break to find the same benefits.
- Move: While the above apps remind you to take short breaks from your computer screen, Move sends daily activity reminders. The app provides over 300 exercises for little workout reminders all day long. Daily Exercises provides similar features for Android users.
- Waterlogged: Track your daily water intake with hydration reminders. Staying hydrated helps you maintain energy throughout the day while keeping muscles and joints lubricated. Water Tracker is a similar app available for Androids.
- Office Stretches: Find relief from muscles stiffness and tension while at the office with this collection of short near-desk stretching exercises. Android users, download Stretch Exercises to find the same relief while at work.
- Fitbit and Jawbone: While these are not standalone apps, these wearable tech devices act as guides to a better, healthier you. Track your steps and daily activity, sleep cycles, and food and drink intake with handy phone apps that are synced to your device.
Stop by your local Relax The Back location and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for more information on how you can have a pain-free and productive day.
If last year was spent dealing with pains, aches, and discomforts, vow to make this year a healthier, pain-free year with these 6 resolutions.
- Resolve to listen to your body: No one knows your body or your discomforts more than you do. Be sure to listen to your body when it is giving you signs – take a break, change your eating or exercises habits, or make adjustments to your workspace or schedule.
- Resolve to be active: Maintaining a regular workout routine will not only help you feel more energized and productive throughout the day, it will also help prevent future injuries. There are different exercises that can be done to help different parts of the back and spine. While cardio aids in losing weight that would otherwise drag down tendons, muscles, and ligaments in the lower back, a strong core will help support and protect the spine.
- Resolve to make quality sleep a priority: Make sure you have a proper mattress and pillow to allow for a comfortable night’s rest as well as adequate support of the muscles and ligaments that support the spine. The positive effects of quality sleep include tissue repair and healing, reduced recovery time for injuries and improvements in mood and personal performance, to name a few.
- Resolve to evaluate your workspace: For desk job workers, back, neck, and shoulder pain may be caused by a poor ergonomic workstation. Resolve to put an end to these aches and pains by setting up your workstation accordingly. Follow this visual guide to office ergonomics to maximize comfort, movement, and productivity.
- Resolve to stretch: There are many benefits of daily stretching. This allows for flexibility in spinal muscles, helping ensure good posture and proper/normal alignment. Increased range of motion and flexibility help to prevent injuries from occurring. Stretching also relieves muscle tension, reduces fatigue and increases blood flow.
- Resolve to drink more water: Staying hydrated not only helps with digestion and concentration but it is also very important for muscle recovery, spinal health and injury prevention. Aim to drink half of your body weight in ounces throughout the day. For example, if you weigh 130 lbs. aim to drink at least 65 oz. per day.
This holiday season, Relax The Back wanted to give our community gifts that keep on giving. Over a two and a half week period, we presented seven gifts that relieve tension and pain. Seven lucky winners have been chosen to receive these gifts of comfort that are sure to bring relief and relaxation.
Congratulations to the following Relax The Back community members:
Thank you to all who participated. We hope everyone has a wonderful holiday; free from pain and stress!
Wondering what to get your loved ones this holiday season? We truly believe nothing brings joy like the gift of comfort. Relax The Back’s 2013 Holiday Gift Guide brings you the best gifts that are sure to relax, relieve pain and discomforts, restore muscles, and bring comfort to all members of the family.
Here are our top ten Ahh-inspiring gifts to help you shop for loved ones this season: