Here are our 7 best tips to help you have a healthy spine in 2020.
1. Have a good exercise regime
A regular exercise regime is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. It needs
to combine both flexibility and strengthening exercises for your spine,
especially your core, to help maintain good spinal function. It also needs to
have some cardiovascular load which can be done in a variety of ways such as
running swimming, biking and the gym, or a multitude of other options.
Remember to always look for the natural exercise we see every day such as taking the
stairs, not the lift. Every bit helps and these minor lifestyle changes will
have long lasting positive health effects.If you are not sure of what exercises are best for you ask your chiropractor at your next visit. Our web page also has an excellent set of stretching and strengthening exercises for your spine.
2. Regular chiropractic check-ups
Just like your regular dental check-ups for your teeth, regular spinal check-ups can detect if you have musculoskeletal problems that are causing symptoms such as low back pain, neck pain, headaches or many other symptoms. Speak to our chiropractors to find out how often you should check to see if your spine is functioning properly.
3. Maintain a healthy weight
After the Christmas and New Year festivities it’s not hard to find yourself carrying a few extra kilos. Unfortunately this can lead to health problems such as high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, osteoarthritis and cancer. Losing even 5 to 10% of your total body weight can produce health benefits such as improved blood pressure, blood cholesterol and blood sugars
Concentrate on reducing your calorie intake and increase your calorie burning. Have a good
balanced diet using lean protein and fibre that is low in carbohydrates to fuel
your body. Just make sure it’s a dietary regime you can stay with for the long
4. Support your spine
In all facets of your life make sure you have good support for your spine. If you sit for long periods of time make sure your desk is ergonomically correct for you. Maybe you should even consider a sit/stand desk and read our blog Desk Ergonomics. Ensure your car seat supports your back properly and use a lumbar support in your car if necessary.
Make sure you have a good quality mattress and pillow that support your neck and spine.
You spend up to 40% of your life in bed so it’s imperative your spine has
excellent support when lying down.
5. Beware your smartphone
Many people spend hours a day on their smartphones. Having your head tilted forward for long periods places extreme stress on your neck and shoulders. It is so common it is now called ‘text neck‘. The term has been attributed to the effect of having your head at a 30-60 degree angle for long periods of time placing severe stress on your neck as it tries to hold up the weight of your spine. The more you bend your head forward the greater the strain. This can lead to long-term damage to your neck and spine. Try bringing the device up to your eye level to reduce your forward head tilt.
6. Maintain good posture
If you have poor posture there is many ways you can improve it, and your health. Make an appointment and speak to one of our chiropractors about the best way to improve your posture.
7. Stay hydrated
Staying hydrated is extremely important for maintaining soft tissue elasticity and having healthy joints. The discs between your vertebrae need proper hydration to support the weight of your spinal column and body. Poor hydration can lead to wear and tear of your discs making you more prone to disc injuries.
Having a healthy spine is essential to having a healthy life. Take time in the New Year to have your spine checked by our chiropractors to make sure yours is working well.