A lot of Americans are bound to their desk chairs for eight hours a day. Recent studies have shown how bad a sedentary lifestyle is for your health, but did you know it can also hurt your back and spine? Dr. Max Cohen, spine surgeon, says sitting distorts the natural curve of your spine, which means your back muscles have to hold your back in shape. It’s important for all people with desk jobs to know the issues sitting for too long can cause and how to effectively prevent these issues from developing.
What Does Sitting Do To Your Spine?
Sitting can affect your spine in a variety of ways, including:
1. Muscular Back Pain – Sitting for extended periods of time can weaken and stiffen the muscles in your back. It can also decrease the amount of blood circulating and oxygen that reaches the muscle cells.
2. Herniated Discs – A sedentary lifestyle puts more pressure on your back and spine, increasing your chances of having a herniated disc.
3. Pinched Back Nerves – Sitting for a majority of the day puts extra pressure on the nerve tissue of the spinal bones.
How Can I Prevent Back and Spine Injuries?
Until standing desks become popular for all companies, it’s important to follow these simple tips to prevent back and spine injuries:
1. Focus on good posture – Slouching only increases your chance of developing back and spine injuries. Sit up straight with your back pushed against the chair to increase back support.
2. Stand every hour - Standing every hour and walking around the office will keep your blood circulating and will stretch out your back.
3. Do simple stretches – Placing your hands on your lower back and stretching backwards will take some of the pressure off your back and keep your muscles from getting stiff.
Contact Spine and Scoliosis Specialists in Greensboro, NC for information on preventing spine injuries from a sedentary lifestyle.