The Keys To A Healthy Spine
39% of adults in the United States reported having back pain in the past 3 months. 54% of those adults reported having neck or back pain that has lasted for at least 5 years. A whopping 73% said they use nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for pain treatment.
Back and neck pain links to the spine, one of the most important parts of our body. Luckily, most spinal issues are preventable and treatable.
What Is The Spine?
The spine is the central structure of support for our bodies. Our head, chest, shoulders, arms, legs, and pelvis are all connected to our spine. It also carries the weight of our entire upper body. Without it, we couldn’t stand upright or move the rest of our bodies.
The spine consists of a long row of bones called “vertebrae”. The bones are all connected by ligaments and spinal disks. The ligaments and disks allow the bones to shift and stretch so that we still have movement.
Inside the bones lies the spinal cord and nerves, the key to all our body’s movements. The spinal cord is long and stretches the length of the bones which protects the cord.
The bones must protect the spinal cord because, without it, we wouldn’t be able to do anything. The nerves in the spine carry signals to and from the brain and muscles. This network connects the brain to all the bones and organs in the body. Together, the brain and spinal cord make up the central nervous system.
Why Is It Important To Keep Your Spine Healthy?
The spine protects your spinal cord and nerves which allows your body to function. If you experience a spinal cord injury, it can affect your ability to move and live your life.
Spinal injuries may occur due to everyday problems. Issues may arise because of stress, lack of exercise, and physical labor. Yet, a spinal injury can also be a result of events like a motor accident, a fall, or a sports injury.
Weakening of the supportive muscles and ligaments can also restrict your life. Without the strength of those supportive structures, movement may become painful and difficult.
Limited movement places more pressure on the spine. This increases the risk of further injury and pain. Yet, a healthy and stable spine supports movement and flexibility.
By keeping your spine strong and healthy, you’ll continue to have a full range of motion. It will also reduce or end your pain, leading to a better life.
How Can You Keep Your Spine Healthy?
The key to a healthy spine is regular exercise and activity. The stronger the muscles are that support your spine, the less likely you are to experience pain.
Muscles and ligaments support your spine. It’s common for them to weaken with age or injury, but that doesn’t have to be your reality.
If you work to strengthen the spine and ligaments, your spine will be more stable.
To strengthen your spine, you should engage all the muscles in your back and your core. Having a strong core will stabilize your spine and maintain flexibility without pain. Some of the best exercises for this include curl-ups, side plank, and bird-dog.
Your mom was right all along when she kept telling you to stop slouching and stand up straight! Bad posture can lead to spine issues and not to mention back and neck pain. Some simple tips to help include making sure you have an ergonomic office setup (including your table, chair, computer monitor), take breaks from sitting or standing, and having a supportive pillow and mattress for sleeping.
Another good option to keep spine health is receiving chiropractic care. Chiropractic care is a natural way to relieve pain without medication. It also helps your spine stay healthy.
Chiropractors generally focus on the spine. They manipulate your body and realign the joints. This can relieve pain in the bones, cartilage, connective tissue, joints, and muscles.
Besides reducing pain, chiropractic care contributes to the health of the spine. It can increase mobility and improve posture. It may even reduce deformities of the spine.
Maintaining a healthy spine can help you continue to lead the life you want to live. A stable spine ensures you keep your mobility and will prevent pain.
Fortunately, for most people, this is achievable through regular exercise. However, if you want to see a chiropractor to take a look at any back or potential spine issues you could have, those living in Snohomish County can visit Everett Spine & Rehab.