Within weeks of belting out the final stanza of “Auld Lang Syne,” a large segment of those resolving to exercise more in the New Year will be on the sidelines. The cause? A variety of injuries and conditions ranging from stress fractures and twisted ankles to the biggest culprit of all, low back pain.
A Global Burden of Disease, Injuries, and Risk Factors study recently cited low back pain as the single leading cause of disability worldwide. Estimates indicate that 80% of us contend with the common ailment at some point in our lives. The intense and debilitating pain that accompanies low back injuries often prevents sufferers from going to work, participating in household chores and enjoying time with loved ones.
Low back pain doesn’t have to be a prescription for couch surfing. Current studies show no evidence that supervised physical activity increases the risk of additional back problems or work disability. Counter to the age-old recommendation of inactivity, a customized exercise program under the direction of a physical therapist is widely prescribed to reduce pain and disability.
“Back pain is one of the most common problems we treat here at Kinetic Edge Physical Therapy,” commented CEO and Physical Therapist Troy Vander Molen. “Many people think they have to live with the consequences of back pain and aren’t aware of the relief that physical therapy can provide.”
Although back pain can affect anyone, the major risk factors include age, poor physical fitness, genetics, being overweight, and smoking. The National Institutes of Health suggests the following to prevent back pain:
- Exercise frequently and keep your back muscles strong.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Eat a balanced diet, including daily recommendations for calcium and vitamin D.
- Focus on body mechanics by standing up straight and lifting heavy objects with bent legs and a straight back.
- According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, low back pain sufferers should prioritize a supervised exercise program and a gradual return to everyday activities to restore back strength. Following an evaluation, physical therapists can recommend specific exercises to prevent and treat back pain, and provide additional treatment options to address pain and restore mobility.
If you are interested in how we can help you get rid of your back pain, give us a call at 866-588-0230 today!