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As I settle into my ‘thirty somethings’, I’m noticing that things aren’t functioning the way they used to. My stomach throws temper tantrum when I over-do it on the dairy, my eyesight is playing tricks on me, gravity is ‘shifting things’ to and fro…and my back…my back is killing me.
There are many reasons that women suffer from back pain. Pregnancy, osteoporosis, onset arthritis, fibromyalgia, emotional stress (causing tension), large breasts…even the wrong bra…can all be responsible for the unbearable back pain that so many of us have been trying to ‘get used to’. It’s awful, and often agonizing.
I’m no Madeline Manning, but I’m still far too young, to feel this old. I don’t want to move like an old lady. Even when I’m an old lady, I don’t want to be moving like an old lady. So, as I do…I hit the books in search of potential solutions to my achy-breaky-back problems.
First, above all, seek out advice from your health care practitioner. Your doctor will be able to first assess and diagnose your situation. Any medical will first want to rule out potential disease and/or injury before deciding the best approach to treatment.
After seeking the advice from your doctor, here are some tips for keeping your back pain in check.
This form of traditional Chinese medicine uses needles, inserted along specifically chosen pathways, to unblock energy. This treatment is said to calm the nervous system and release natural pain relieving chemicals.
Many people underestimate the power of breathing to help improve health. In relation to back health, breathing techniques can help reduce pain, can have a significant improvement on stress-levels associated with dealing with pain and disability.
Vitamins and Minerals
Eating well, and maintaining a healthy supply of vitamins and minerals…is a no brainer. These nutrients however, go the extra mile.
– Vitamin D – Chronic muscle pain has been linked to deficiencies in Vitamin D. Dose up on your Vitamin D through healthy exposure to sunlight, or an affordable supplement found through your local drug or health store.
– Vitamin B12 – This has been shown to help problems with lower back pain, reducing pain and disability. Vitamin B12 is found predominantly through meat, eggs and dairy. For those who are cutting down, or have completely eliminated meat products from their diets – Fear Not! Vitamin B 12 Supplements are also easily tracked down through local drugstores!
– Magnesium – Tests have suggested this mineral has a dramatic effect on the pain experienced with chronic lower back pain. Consume more magnesium by taking supplements or by eating more green leafy vegetables, dairy products, fish, meat and nuts.
Capsaicin is found in chili peppers. Word on the street is that when the skin absorbs capsaicin, it has a pain relieving affect. The good news with capsaicin cream, is that it can be found in nearly local drug or health store, and doesn’t come with the questionable side effects of a pharmaceutical product.
Yoga has been all the rage for some time now…but this low impact form of exercise has significant bonuses to just ‘getting fit’. Yoga focuses on creating a sense of balance within your body by developing flexibility and strength. Yoga can reduce pain and decrease flexibility. Don’t be intimidated. Everyone who started, felt silly and inflexible. That’s the point. The point is to push your limits and get stronger! Beginner classes in your community will be easy to find.
Krill is a tiny shrimp that lives in the cold ocean waters in Antarctica. While fish oil has been getting attention for some time now, not a lot of specific attention has been placed on Krill Oil even though it has quite the impressive resume. Studies have proven that krill oil will reduce inflammation, and, by association, a lot of the pain associated with arthritis.
With such a high Omega 3 content, krill oil is also known to alleviate some of the symptoms attached to premenstrual syndrome, boost immunity and promote cellular health.
Massage is a common remedy (and treat!) for achy backs. A good therapist will use techniques that reduce tension, alleviate pain and provide relief to anxiety and depression. Personally, I don’t think you should even wait for back pain to get yourself a massage. Chances are, even as you read this, it’s well deserved.
So, those are a few ‘tricks of the trade’. Nothing fancy. But I hope next time I go to pick up my nephew, I’m not stuck moaning on the couch for days afterwards. After all, I plan on teaching the little guy how to boogie when he grows up!
*Sandra Goldstein has been working in the nutrition industry for a number of years and prides herself on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. When Sandra is not down the gym she likes to watch TV on her couch and annoy her cat.