Preventing BACK PAIN, the leading cause of disability
Tips to reduce your chances of a back injury occurring from the North American Spine Society:
- When standing, position one foot in front of the other, knees slightly bent. This takes pressure off your lower back.
- Sit with your knees slightly higher than your hips for good lower-back support.
- Stand on a stool if you need to reach for something above shoulder level.
- Sleep on your side with a pillow between your knees to reduce pressure on your back. If you do sleep on your back, put a couple of pillows under your knees.
- Push heavy items instead of pulling them. Use your arms and legs to start the push. If you must lift a heavy object, get someone to help you.
- Keep within 10 pounds of your ideal weight. Added weight puts a strain on your back.
- Don’t smoke. Nicotine from tobacco restricts the flow of blood to the disks that cushion your vertebrae.
Adapted from BlueCross BlueShield of North Dakota. Healthy Choices Third Quarter 2005.