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February 2018 Mall Walker Newsletter

Decrease Your Risk of Low Back Pain

As much as 80 percent of the population will suffer from lower back pain at some point in their life. For most, low back pain lasts only a few days to a few weeks, but for some it can be chronic. Most cases of back pain are mechanical and may be due to sprains, strains, disc degeneration, herniation, rupture or other causes. All back pain should be evaluated by a doctor. 

There are several risk factors. Some are out of our control, while others can be addressed through lifestyle changes.

Age. As we age, muscles lose tone and elasticity, bones become more porous and prone to fracture, and discs lose flexibility and fluid. Protect yourself from osteoporosis by consuming foods high in calcium and vitamin D and performing weight-bearing exercises.

Weight gain. Excess weight puts more stress on joints, muscles and the lower back.

Lack of physical activity. Weak and unused muscles in the core and back do not adequately support the spine. Low-impact aerobics protect the vertebral discs. Back strengthening and stretching exercises help keep muscles strong. Yoga and Pilates strengthen the core.

Ergonomics. Proper lifting, pulling, pushing, bending and posture are key to preventing injury.

 

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