Common Causes of Back Pain After Sitting
Troubled with back pain after sitting? If your back hurts after a day at work, you are not the only one. Studies show that lower back pain affects 8 out of 10 people and is a major cause of disability. Today, several jobs require people to spend long hours behind a desk, and many complain of pain in the back and legs. Here are some of the common causes of back pain.
Chair disease, as it is generally referred to, is a common condition caused by spending too much time sitting. When you are at your desk for long, it can lead to excessive loading as well as tissue deformation of the lumbar spine. Sitting puts twice the amount of pressure on the spine than standing; slouching creates even more pressure. Movement is crucial as the disks located in our vertebrae, which are vital shock absorbers, receive their nutrition when we move. When we stay locked in one position, they do not get their nutrients, and this is not good for the body.
Most of us sit wrong. We tend to slouch when seated at a desk, and we go hours without much movement. When you do this, you put your lumbar spine in a flexed position, which causes the stabilizing ligaments present in your lower back to weaken. A bad posture overstretches and tires the ligaments. When the spine is out of alignment, it causes stress in the ligaments, discs, back muscles and spinal joints. A bad posture also weakens the abdominal muscles that offer protection to the spine, and this makes it susceptible to injury.
Look into purchasing a kneeling stool. The design of this chair automatically forces the body to come into perfect posture and alignment.
An ill planned workspace can cause repetitive strain injuries. The position of the chair, the height of the computer, the position of your desk, etc play an important role in shaping the posture that we assume at work. The eyes and hands, in particular, can affect posture, especially if the work material is placed too low, high or far.
If your back pain is due to sitting for long, take appropriate steps to remedy the situation. Check your workstation and make appropriate changes. The screen of your computer should be a little below your line of vision. Your elbows should be off the table and your feet on the ground. Your elbows, knees and hips should be bent at 90 degrees. Place a small pillow between the small of your back and your chair to prevent straining your lower back.
Self-care and Recovery Tips
Remind yourself to take frequent breaks throughout the day. Become aware of your postures and check them several times. Your head should be centered over your torso and your shoulders relaxed and down. Learn some stretches and exercises and do them daily to help ease any stresses accumulated in the spine. While at work, stand up frequently and walk around for few minutes. Stretch your arms and move your head and shoulders. Click here for more suggestions on how to relieve your aches.
It might take several days to bring back the flexibility in tight muscles; however, you would notice an improvement when you incorporate these changes. Do not overdo the stretches as it can cause injury. If you have a stubborn back pain after sitting that shows no sign of abating, consult a doctor.