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Back Pain | Your Health & Fitness IN THE BACK A Pain


Four in fi ve adults will suff er from back pain at some stage. For many, it will not only cause discomfort but also adversely aff ect mobility and quality of life. However, there are steps you can take to prevent back problems and ensure that back pain does not get in the way of your daily activities.


T


here are various types of back pain, but the most common cause is strain that leads to tension,


stiffness or an ache in the back, neck and shoulders. Many people only experience lower back pain, but it can be felt anywhere between the tailbone (coccyx) and the upper neck depending on the type. Most kinds of backache—such as whiplash, a slipped disc or neck and shoulder pain—are caused by external strain, whilst ankylosing spondylitis is a long- term condition caused by a chronic infl ammation of the spine. Although most cases of back pain should resolve on their own in a relatively short period of time, there are a number of things you can do to ease pain, ensure a speedy recovery and stop it becoming a recurring issue.


44 DEAR DOCTOR WITH DR CHRIS STEELE


General posture is a key consideration for those worried about back pain. You should try to sit up straight with the shoulders down, elbows relaxed, buttocks touching the back of your chair and your thighs at a right angle to the body (or sloping down slightly). Feet should be fi rmly planted on the fl oor or on a footrest and you should avoid crossing your legs or twisting at the waist if sitting in a moveable desk chair.


Prevention is Better


than Cure The most effective approach to back pain is to address it before it starts. Maintaining good posture whilst sitting at a desk or driving, choosing the right mattress and taking care when lifting, can have a signifi cant effect in reducing your risk of back pain. Here are some simple changes you can make:


Sit up straight:


Dr. Chris advises A number of specially


designed car seats, mattresses and chairs


are available to buy and can help to both avoid and minimise back pain.


celebrityangels.co.uk


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