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Many adults complain of back and neck problems. In some cases back and neck pain result from preventable injuries. Fortunately, the following strategies can reduce your risk or help ease the pain if you’ve already got a problem.
For the Back
Get in shape. Being overweight and out of shape are a dangerous combination due to the stress and pressure they place on the spine. Getting in shape by doing aerobic conditioning on a treadmill, stair machine or elliptical trainer accomplishes two things: It strengthens the trunk muscles so they can support the spine and it burns calories, which can lead to weight loss.
Lift properly. If you have to lift something heavy, make sure you:
Adjust your workstation. Start by adjusting your chair to support your back. To do so, adjust the lumbar support to fit your low back’s inward curve. Adjust the height so your feet can rest flat on the floor. Place your computer monitor and keyboard directly in front of you.
Keep moving. Avoid sitting in one position for hours at a time. Make it a point to take a break every hour and get out of your chair to walk. Doing so will stretch and strengthen the muscles in your back.
If you experience lower back pain despite your best efforts, experts suggest several self-care strategies:
For the Neck
Got a pain in the neck? You aren’t alone. Neck pain is extremely common and can be caused by a wide range of factors. These include bad posture, your sleeping position, improper lifting, arthritis, degeneration of the neck’s cervical disks, and injuries. Rarely, a tumor or infection is to blame. Fortunately, these simple steps can prevent many cases of neck pain:
Find a San Diego Orthopedic Surgeon
To learn more about orthopedics at Sharp or to find a Sharp-affiliated doctor, search for San Diego orthopedic surgeons or call 1-800-82-SHARP (1-800-827-4277), Monday through Friday, from 8 am to 6 pm.