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How to Take Care of Your Back: 5 Tips for Boomers

By Lex Gonzales March 31, 2022 Health and Fitness

As we age, our bodies change, and we can start to experience different health problems. One common issue that many people face as they get older is back pain.

This can be caused by a variety of things, such as poor posture, incorrect lifting techniques, or even just the natural wear and tear on our bodies.

In this article, we will discuss some tips on how to take care of your back and prevent pain from occurring. If you follow these tips, you’ll be able to stay healthy and comfortable well into your golden years!

#1: Follow Good Posture Habits

Poor posture is one of the main causes of back pain. When you sit or stand, make sure to keep your spine straight and your shoulders relaxed. Avoid slouching or hunching over; it places unnecessary stress and strain on your vertebral discs.

Also, be mindful of your posture when you are sleeping. The best position for sleeping is on your back with a pillow under your knees.

This will help to reduce the strain on your lower back. If you sleep on your stomach, you can put a pillow under your hips to help alleviate some of the pressure.

Finally, make sure to get up and move around every few hours to keep your muscles and joints from getting stiff.

By following these simple tips, you can help to prevent back pain and keep your spine healthy.

#2: Correct Lifting Techniques

One of the most common causes of back pain is incorrect lifting techniques.

When lifting a heavy object, you should always bend at the knees and not at the waist. Furthermore, you should try to keep the object close to your body and avoid twisting your spine.

These simple tips can help to prevent strain on your back muscles and keep your spine healthy.

#3: Counter the Natural Wear and Tear on the Body

As we age, it’s natural for our bodies to experience some wear and tear. This is especially true for the back, which supports the weight of the entire upper body.

Over time, the discs between the vertebrae begin to break down, and the ligaments and muscles that support the spine can weaken. These changes can lead to a loss of flexibility and mobility, as well as pain and stiffness.

To help keep your back healthy and prevent these age-related changes, it’s important to practice good posture, engage in regular physical activity, and keep your body well-hydrated.

With a little care and attention, you can help keep your back healthy for years to come.

#4: Stretching Exercises

One of the best things you can do for your back is to keep it limber with stretching exercises. Stretching helps to lengthen and maintain the flexibility of the muscles and connective tissues that support your spine and can help to alleviate pain and prevent injuries.

There is a variety of stretching exercises that can be effective, but some simple tips to keep in mind include:

  • Start slowly and gently, warming up your muscles with stretches that are easy to do.
  • Do not bounce or jerk while stretching. Instead, hold each stretch for 10-30 seconds and breathe deeply.
  • Focus on key areas such as the hamstrings, hips, and shoulders. These areas are often tight and can lead to back pain if they are not properly stretched.
  • Be consistent. Stretching regularly (at least three times per week) is the best way to see results.

By incorporating these simple tips into your stretching routine, you can help keep your back healthy and prevent back pain.

#5: Spinal Stabilization Exercises

One of the most important things you can do for your back is to perform spinal stabilization exercises on a regular basis.

These exercises help to strengthen the muscles that support your spine, improving your posture and helping to prevent injuries.

There are many different spinal stabilization exercises that you can do and there are specific exercises for back pain as well.

Start by performing 3 sets of 10 repetitions of each exercise, 3 times per week. As you become stronger, you can increase the number of repetitions and sets. Remember to listen to your body and stop if you start to feel pain. With regular practice, you can help keep your back healthy and pain-free for years to come.

You Don’t Have to Live with Back Pain

Back pain is a common problem for baby boomers and can be caused by a variety of factors. However, by following the simple tips provided in this article, you can help to prevent back pain and keep your spine healthy.

Good posture habits, stretching exercises, spinal stabilization exercises, and good lifting techniques are essential for keeping your back strong and flexible.

Do you live with back pain? What do you do about it? Do you take medications, or do you use exercise and posture techniques – or maybe both? What have you learned about back pain in your own life journey?

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The Author

Dr. Lex Gonzales, PT, DPT received his degree of Doctor of Physical Therapy from the University of South Florida in the USA. He has been a physiotherapist for over 24 years with a special interest in the geriatric or older adult population. Visit him at drlexgonzales.com.

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