If you have ever experienced back pain, then you are just one of the over 80% of adults in America who have had back pain issues. The problem with most back pain is that the cause is never obvious. It’s important to understand that back pain is not a diagnosis in and of itself. Instead, it is a symptom of another, broader problem. But, sometimes those problems aren’t as serious or as common as you might expect. In fact, some causes of back pain might just surprise you.
The right shoe can make a difference in how your back feels. Wearing high heels causes you to step with your toes on the ground. The body cannot evenly distribute your weight if you are putting an awkward amount of pressure on your toes. This causes your spine to be off its equilibrium in regard to supporting your body, which, in turn, causes back pain.
Likewise, wearing flat, backless shoes can lead to poor weight distribution on the spine, because each the heel slides around unstably. Although it might not look as chic or be as convenient, a good shoe can make sure your back is fit.
Sleeping on your Stomach
Although it might be comfortable, sleeping with your stomach on the bed is a great way to put unnecessary pressure on your spine and the joints, muscles, and ligaments that surround it. Sleeping on your back or on your side is a much better way to reduce pressure and help elongate the spine so that it is in a neutral state. If stomach sleeping is imperative for you, then place a pillow under your hips to alleviate disk pressure.
Wearing the Wrong Bra
If you’re a woman and you have large breasts, then you know what it’s like to have added weight on the front of your body. This extra weight can force you to slouch or slump and put pressure on your back. A bra that offers proper support will allow you to function better, and it will likely reduce the pain in your back. Bras that don’t offer proper support can actually make the problem worse. You may need to get custom fitted for a bra that can support your breasts.
Little or No Exercise
This one might be a little more obvious than the others, but if you don’t exercise or stretch out your back, then it’s common for the muscles to degrade. If you have incurred an injury or you are simply having a bad back day, then taking it easy is an appropriate response. Lying down on your back mitigates stress on the spine, but trying to stay that way for multiple days at a time can actually do more harm than good.
It’s better to engage in a few stretches or “low-impact activities” like walking, even if you feel like it will cause you pain. Simply walking for ten minutes can help your back feel better.
Of course, there are plenty of other issues that have an effect on back pain, and it’s always important to talk to your doctor if anything becomes really severe.
License: Creative Commons
Rachel Martinez is a physical therapist and traveling nurse. She has written many articles on the topic of back pain prevention and back pain treatment.