You're not alone if you're suffering from lower back pain. Studies show that 80 percent of the world's population will experience back pain at some point over the course of their lives. In fact, back pain is the number one problem facing the United States workforce today, resulting in missed work days, decreased company productivity levels and, of course, uncomfortable, wrenching pain for the sufferer.
According to the Medical Multimedia Group, low back pain is the leading cause of disability between the ages of 19-45, and the number one leading impairment in occupational injuries.
Clearly, back pain needs to be taken seriously, and lower back support should be a high priority.
The body needs sound support to maintain its weight and perform normal activities. If the support structure is weakened, the muscles must work harder to keep the feet, knees, hips and back in alignment.
Sometimes the effects are immediate, but in many cases,
back problems develop over time, so it's important to take measures to aid lower back support.
Bad habits, such as the following, can often result in painful
- Poor posture
- Overexertion in work and play
- Sitting incorrectly – especially those hunched over a desk or computer all day
- Carelessly pushing, pulling and lifting heavy objects
Back pain can be the result of other factors, including:
- Age: If you're at least middle aged, you're at risk
- Occupation: Do you have to lift heavy objects or perform strenuous activity as part of your job?
- Gender: Men are more at risk than women, though women
are more susceptible to osteoporosis.
Back pain may also occur due to an injury, which can eventually lead to a bulging disc or arthritis. These conditions put pressure on the spinal cord, and cause constant pain for the sufferer, so make an appointment with your doctor for a thorough exam.
If you're experiencing a dull ache in your low back, then you're one
of the millions suffering from lower back pain. If the pain lasts more
than two or three days, and starts interfering with your normal routine, see your doctor.
- Posture Support: The most important preventive measure for lower back pain is practicing good posture when standing and sitting. During the day, you're using your back muscles constantly, and these strained and weakened muscles need the additional support good posture can provide. Sit up straight, round your shoulders back and hold your head high.
- Foot Support: The body's foundation starts with the feet, so minor changes in shoes – buying more therapeutic shoes, avoiding high heels, giving your feet support with orthotics (shoe inserts) – can also help limit the strain feet place on the hips and back.
- Back Support: Strengthen your back muscles to prevent injury by stretching and performing back toning exercises – use the low back machine at your local gym – on a regular basis.
If you already have an injury, or are experiencing some back pain, companies like FootSmart make many products for back support, including back cushions, back supports, back support pillows and more. These products can help improve your posture and provide good support to relieve your lower back pain.
Other treatment options include:
- Ice or heat
- Physical therapy
- Chiropractic treatment
See your doctor for recommendations on lower back support and treating your overall back pain problems.
Information on foot, leg and lower body health conditions provided by The Podiatry Institute, dedicated to advancing the standard of care in podiatric medicine and its effects on muscoskeletal health.