15 Habits That Improve Spinal Alignment and Reduce Back Pain

15 Habits That Improve Spinal Alignment and Reduce Back Pain

spinal alignmentBack Pain

Back pain is a common problem among adults, and it can interfere with your quality of life. You might find that you miss activities you enjoy and can’t do basic things around the house because of the pain. Spinal alignment is essential if you want to reduce back pain, so focusing on that will help.

Back pain is directly related to spinal alignment, so taking care of your spine, back, and neck will decrease the pain. The misalignment and back pain is often due to bad habits such as poor posture and improper sleeping positions. Luckily, you have time to fix all of the issues.

15 Ways to Improve Spinal Alignment and Reduce Back Pain

If you deal with back pain that you believe is caused by spinal misalignment, forming better habits can help. For those who don’t experience back pain, these habits can help prevent it.

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1. Stay Active and Exercise Regularly

Those who aren’t active tend to experience more back pain than those who are. Make sure you exercise each day to help keep your spine healthy and reduce back pain. Some of the best exercises for your back include:

  • swimming
  • biking
  • walking
  • running
  • any other type of cardio

Another reason that regular exercise helps reduce back pain is that exercise promotes the production of endorphins in your body. When endorphins are released, they work as a natural pain killer.



2. Pay Attention to Your Posture

For proper spinal alignment and reducing back pain, you must practice good posture. Slouching, stooping, and any other form of bad posture have a severe effect on your spine and back. Not only is it uncomfortable and can become painful, but it can do irreversible damage, too.

If you notice that your back hurts because of bad posture, it is time to make a change. Make sure to switch between sitting and standing throughout your day, and teach yourself to practice good posture in both positions.

When you are sitting, your knees should be level with your hips. If you are in front of a computer, the monitor should be at eye level, so you aren’t keeping your spine in an unnatural position. When you are standing, keep your shoulder blades down and your pelvis facing forward.



3. Maintain Your Weight at a Healthy Level

Being overweight is one of the leading causes of back pain and spinal misalignment. If you are overweight, consider losing weight to improve your spine health. Maintaining a healthy weight will decrease the stress on your muscles, ligaments, and tendons in your lower back.

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Cannabidiol (CBD) can help with many bodily functions, and many Americans are using it for pain reduction. Additionally, CBD also has anti-inflammatory properties, allowing it to further help with back pain.

5. Lift Safely

It can be tempting to lift something however you can, but you must be careful. If you lift something improperly, it can do serious damage to your back or spine. The correct way to lift a heavy object is by doing the following:

  • stand as close as you can to the object
  • bend your knees so that your arms are even with the object
  • lift using the muscles in your legs and knees instead of your back and upper body
  • keep your head down
  • make sure your back remains straight

You should ensure that you don’t lift an object by yourself that should be lifted with help. Asking for help is much better than suffering an injury alone. You should also avoid lifting heavy items above your head.



6. Do Yoga

Yoga can help improve spinal alignment and reduce back pain in a couple of ways. First, it helps you stretch out and relax tense muscles that might contribute to pain. Secondly, yoga can help you re-align your spine as you stretch your body out.

7. Don’t Sit for too Long at a Time

This habit could be difficult for those who work in an office or other setting that requires sitting. Staying in one position for too long can wreak havoc on the muscles in your back and neck, though. While it might be impossible to work standing up, make sure you take breaks to stand frequently.

You could get up and move around once every hour during your workday. If that isn’t an option, find something to do in your workspace that requires you to stand for a little while.



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8. Stop Smoking Cigarettes

Surprisingly, nicotine can damage your spine and intensify your back pain. It does this because nicotine damages spinal tissues weakens bones, and damages spinal discs. Plus, people who smoke tend to be less active than others, further contributing to spinal issues and back pain.

9. Get Good Sleep and Sleep Properly

Your body requires sleep, so if you want to feel good, you must get enough sleep. When you are sleeping, your cells repair themselves, which can help reduce back problems.

Getting enough sleep isn’t the only ticket to improving your spine health. The position you sleep in plays a role, too.

It is best to sleep on your side because any other position puts too much pressure on your spine. Investing in a mattress and pillow that allows you to keep your spine properly aligned will help, too. You could also consider sleeping with a pillow between your legs, which will ease pressure from your back.

10. Choose Supportive Shoes

You are past the days of being able to choose your shoes based on looks alone. Now, you have to choose shoes based on their level of support, too. No matter what you are doing, it would be best to have good support for your lower back.

Without support, you will experience serious back pain. It would help if you had shoes that have arch and heel support, and make sure the shoes aren’t too tight. With properly fitting shoes that offer support, you are sure to notice less back pain.

11. Stay Hydrated

Staying hydrated is essential to improving spinal alignment and reducing back pain. Hydration is needed to maintain the elasticity and fluidity in the soft tissues of joints. When dehydration occurs, your spinal discs lose height and can cause discs to slip out of place.

Discs slipping out of place isn’t the only bad thing that can happen due to dehydration, either. It can also cause the cushion between your bones to deteriorate, contributing to serious back pain.

12. Eat Healthy Foods

Your diet plays a role in your spinal health. Some foods can cause inflammation in your body, which puts pressure on your spine and back. This inflammation can cause pain and many other issues for your spine.

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Some of the foods that cause inflammation include:

  • sugar
  • trans fat
  • processed foods
  • red meat
  • refined carbohydrates

Your best bet is to stick to whole foods that haven’t been altered in any way. While you can treat yourself sometimes, please don’t make it a habit to indulge in the unhealthy foods listed above.



13. Take Time to Stretch

Stretching can help you maintain joint function and range of motion. Plus, it reduces your risk of being injured. Stretching your back and neck can alleviate issues you already have, and it can prevent new ones from occurring.

One of the best ways to stretch your neck and back is to roll your head in a clockwise direction. Rotate it three times, and then do it again in a counter-clockwise direction. This stretch will ease tension and promote spinal alignment.

For your back, you can use an exercise ball for stretching. Rest your back on the exercise ball and roll yourself backward. When you do this, it stretches your back and spine.

14. Rest Your Spine

While being active and exercising are good habits that improve spinal alignment and reduce back pain, resting your spine is important, too. When you lay down, focus on relaxing your spine and allowing it to rest completely.

15. Practice Proper Ergonomics

When you are in your workplace, you must practice proper ergonomics. This practice means that if you sit at a desk, ensure everything is at the correct height. Your chair should support your lower back, and your knees should be even with your hips.

Plus, your feet should rest comfortably on the floor. Your monitor should be at eye-level, too, and you should consider a keyboard tray to allow for comfortable access.

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Final Thoughts on Habits That Improve Spinal Alignment and Reduce Back Pain

If you want to improve spinal alignment and reduce back pain, forming the habits discussed above will help. Plus, it can help prevent pain and further injury from occurring.

The sooner you get started forming these habits, the sooner you will feel better and the healthier you will be. Your spinal alignment affects your joints, muscles, and nerves, so it is essential to your well-being to make sure it is improved.

Eliminate your bad habits that contribute to your back and spinal issues, and replace them with these good habits. You will be glad you did, and they will quickly become a natural part of your life.



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Sarah Barkley is a lifestyle blogger and freelance writer with a degree in Literature. She is experienced in all things related to parenting, marriage, and life as a millennial parent, but loves to learn new things and will take on any topic. When she isn't writing, she is immersed in a book or watching Gilmore Girls.