Research has revealed that lower back pain is the highest cause of disability in the world.
A study by The Global Burden of Disease found that out of the 291 conditions studied, lower back pain came in highest in terms of years lost to disability and sixth in terms of overall burden.
The study is important in raising awareness of an often over-looked and poorly understood condition, which is responsible for around 40% of all sickness absence at work in the UK, and equates to approximately 900 million work days lost per year.
So how can you prevent back pain?
1. Posture – stand and sit upright and evenly balanced.
2. Bend and lift correctly –Keep your head up and let your knees take the strain. Distribute your weight evenly and avoid twisting/bending your back.
3. Take breaks – particularly from activities such as long distance driving so you can stretch your legs and readjust.
4. Lose weight – too much upper body weight can put unnecessary strain on your back. Use a BMI calculator to see if you need to lose weight.
5. Wear flat shoes with cushioned soles – to reduce pressure on your back.
6. Avoid sudden movements – which could strain your back.
7. Manage your stress, anxiety and tension.
8. Exercise – regular exercise is a great way of reducing back pain by stretching, strengthening and mobilising the back.
For more information see http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Back-pain/Pages/Prevention.aspx