8 Ways to Keep Your Spine Healthy

Published: 22/05/2019

Looking after your back can help you avoid painful problems in the future. Here are Bluebird Care Wandsworth's 8 top tips for keeping your spine healthy.  

From slipped discs and broken vertebrae to a trapped nerve or dull ache, most of us will experience back pain at some point in our lives. As we age we’re more likely to suffer from back problems, so what can we all do to stay in good shape? Here are 8 top tips to help you keep your spine healthy.
  1. Keep moving – it doesn’t matter how you do it, but staying active helps you maintain good muscle and bone strength as well as flexibility. Walking is a great, low-impact way to keep your spine in good health and stretching exercises can be particularly beneficial for your back and neck. Exercises like yoga and pilates are also a good way to strengthen the core muscles around your abdomen and lower back which play a crucial role in supporting the spine.
  2. Stay hydrated – this one might be a bit surprising but making sure your body is well hydrated can make a big difference to your back. Dehydration not only causes your muscles to become stiff but the spinal discs that lie between our vertebrae need water to function properly. Without enough fluid, the discs shrink, offering less support to the structure of the spine and making it more likely that bones may rub together.
  3. Lift carefully – incorrect lifting techniques cause a large number of back problems. Appraising the load and being sensible about your limitations is probably the most important thing to think about before considering lifting anything. If you decide to go ahead, following the safe lifting tips from the NHS could help keep your back safe.
  4. Think about your posture – whether you’re walking, waiting in a queue or working at your desk, the way we stand and sit has a huge bearing on our back health. For example, regularly leaning on one leg while standing still or slouching your shoulders forward while walking can lead to back and neck pain. If you’re sitting down, slumping or sitting for prolonged periods could lead to back pain. If you work at a desk, it’s important to make sure everything is ergonomically sound or you could be in for a sore back.
  5. Sleep well – sleep is the time when your back rests, recuperates and regenerates after a hard day’s work, so having the right mattress and pillows is can make all the difference. Making sure your back and neck are properly supported and aligned as well as choosing a good position to sleep in are an important part of looking after your spine.
  6. Support your feet – it’s something we often don’t associate with back pain, but wearing the right shoes is key to maintaining good body alignment. Well-fitting, comfortable shoes that are properly cushioned and have a supportive arch will give your body a strong foundation that supports the lower back and spine.
  7. Watch your weight – being overweight puts extra strain on the spine as you’re having to carry more weight around. This can often manifest as lower back pain, particularly if you’re carrying extra weight around your middle.
  8. Seek help if you have a back problem – it might only be a niggle to begin with but getting help for your back problem when it first starts could stop it turning into a more chronic (and painful) issue in the long term. Seeing your GP or a physiotherapist will give you an idea of what the cause might be and how it can be treated - whether that’s a medical intervention or something as simple as an exercise programme or massage therapy.

Helping You Look After Your Back

Taking care of your back is an important part of staying healthy, happy and mobile as you age. As a homecare provider, we understand how difficult it is for people to cope with chronic back pain and the impact it can have on their quality of life. Our Customers can always rest assured that our specialist domiciliary care teams are here to help them live well at home.

We also know that due to the nature of the job, care staff need to look after their backs properly when helping our Customers. So, we ensure every staff member is fully trained in the correct moving and handling procedures to reduce their risk of back injury and keep them safe.

If you’re living with spinal problems and would like to know how Bluebird Care Wandsworth’s care at home services could help you, get in touch online or give us a call on 020 8877 4950.