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Two Ways to Relieve Back Pain while You Work

Did you know one of the most common reasons Americans miss work is because of lower back pain? If you’ve ever experienced low back pain, you understand how uncomfortable it can be to sit for long periods of time in a chair at a desk. There is no direct or complete solution for back pain, because every human body is unique, and treatment plans vary. While seeing a chiropractor may work for some, others might need physical therapy, pain killers, or even surgery. You can take preventive measures in order to lessen your chances of experiencing chronic or severe back pain. There is no need to suffer at work when there are several ways to relieve back pain while you’re on the job.

Choose Your Chair and Desk

Sometimes all you need is the right tool in order to help relieve back pain. Ergonomic office chairs are a great way to invest in a healthy future for your back. You may hear the word “ergonomic” thrown around when you are shopping for the right chair. This means that it was designed to fit a range of people; however, little things like arm rests and the curve of the chair back might need adjustment to fit your body exactly. This is why you should shop for your own office chair, if possible. The chair should have plenty of back support and fit the natural curve of your body; some chairs will help you improve your posture. Take a “test drive” in the chair to make sure it is what you want and need for your body type.

Many workplaces are encouraging employees to customize their workspace. This might mean upgrading your desk if you have lower back pain. Standing desks are growing in popularity because it allows the user to stand part of the day and sit part of the day. You can even exercise while you work! If you decide to keep your traditional desk, make sure there is enough room for your legs to cross underneath. The extra room allows posture adjustments throughout the day. Your back will get sore if you stay in the same position for too long.

Stretch, Stretch, Stretch

There are solutions for back pain that don’t cost any money: for example, stretching! If you are experiencing chronic back pain, you might need to increase your exercise regimen or perform daily stretches. The next time your back starts to hurt while you’re at work, try one of these exercises:

  • Stand up and sit down without using your hands. This sounds easy, but it can be a challenge for some. Repeat this several times to give your body a break from sitting.
  • Twist your torso. This stretch is pretty common and you can do it right from your chair. As you exhale, turn to a side and grab the back of the chair with the opposite hand. Repeat on the other side.
  • Give yourself a leg hug. Sit on the edge of your chair (make sure it won’t roll away) and with your legs flat on the floor, lean over, put your chest to your knees, and wrap your arms around your legs. Hold for a few seconds, feel the tension release, and then relax.

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