We only get one spine! So keeping our spines happy and healthy is of utmost importance! Here are 5 simple tips for taking care of your spine to implement into your life.
Sleep in a neutral, aligned position.
Sleep is your spine’s time to relax and recover from the day, just like the rest of your body. Choosing a mattress that is firm to medium-firm will support your spine; rather than an old or soft mattress that will allow your spine to sag.
Additionally, your sleeping position matters, too! If you think about it, we spend about one-third of our lives in bed, if you’re in bed for 8 hours a night. For back sleepers, try putting a pillow or bolster under your knees when you sleep. This will allow some pressure to be taken off of your low back. For the side sleepers, put a pillow or bolster in between your legs. A pillow in between your legs will allow your hips to stay neutral and balanced, which will minimize stress on your spine.
Find good fitting shoes for you.
Your whole body is connected! Whether you’re exercising or going to work, finding shoes that fit you correctly is important in supporting your back. Good fitting shoes should fit snug at the heel, plus prevent too much pronation or supination of the foot. Also, your foot should not overly roll to the outside or inside when walking. In conclusion, try before you buy!
Strengthen your core muscles.
Your core muscles consist of your abdominal muscles, as well as your lower back muscles. Strong core muscles support your spine and can take pressure off of your back. Sadly, the majority of us don’t use our core muscles much in our normal activities of daily living. Check out some core exercises here.
Practice good ergonomics.
Good ergonomics is important, especially while sitting! Your spine is under more load when you’re sitting compared to standing. Our tendency is to slouch or lean forward when we’re sitting at a desk, which puts more stress on the lower discs in your spine. Choose a chair that keeps the natural curve of the spine, AND practice good posture when sitting for extended periods of time.
Regular visits to your chiropractor.
Chiropractic is great not only for recovery after injuries or accidents, but also for pain management, improved sleep, improved organ function, improved posture, and overall improved body functions!