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Understanding the Relationship Between Back Pain and Sedentary Lifestyles

A sedentary lifestyle involves a lifestyle that lacks physical activity and normal body movement. The person does not exercise and usually spends their time on the couch or in front of a screen.

Today, many young people spend most of their time indoors, glued to their televisions, video games, and other electronics, instead of getting the exercise they need to develop and grow in a healthy manner.

Children who live a sedentary lifestyle are more likely to develop a bevy of different health problems and conditions as they get older. For example, they may develop high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease when reaching middle age.

Back pain is also a common result of living a sedentary lifestyle. Lack of circulation and mobility may cause back spasms, a sore back, and poor posture. The pain may be acute, meaning it will usually go away on its own with some lifestyle modifications or may come and go sporadically.

Acute back pain tends to last between two days and two weeks.

Back pain can also be chronic, meaning the pain will not go away after a few days or weeks and will usually get worse unless the person sees a doctor or chiropractor to receive medical treatment.

As for subacute back pain, it may develop suddenly or over time. It can last anywhere from 1 to 3 months.

Major Reasons for Back Pain

Back pain can be caused by osteoporosis. When the patient’s bones become brittle and porous, fractures can develop in the spinal vertebrae, causing intense pain.

The lower back region can also be affected by osteoarthritis. The space around the spinal cord can also narrow over time due to spinal arthritis. The medical term for this condition is spinal stenosis, which can also be painful.

It is also possible for the material inside a disc to rupture or bulge, causing intense pressure to be applied on the nearby nerves, which subsequently triggers back pain. 

Moreover, spinal ligaments and the muscles in the back can become strained due to heavy lifting or moving suddenly and awkwardly. Muscle spasms can be triggered by a sedentary lifestyle, as being in poor shape can lead to perpetual strain on one’s back region.

The erosion and inflammation of the joint cartilage of the sacroiliac joint can be caused by pregnancy, an infection, arthritis, or an injury caused by living a sedentary life. The sacroiliac joint is responsible for load transfer between the spine and lower anatomy.

It lies where the pelvis and spine come together, so it must be well maintained. Fibromyalgia may also cause back pain. Some patients with fibromyalgia may also be dealing with wear-and-tear arthritis that adversely affects their lumbar spine.

Unfortunately, their pre-existing condition may exacerbate their lumbar-spine-based arthritis, causing excruciating back pain.

How a Sedentary Lifestyle Contributes to Back Pain

The lack of metabolism and exercise that comes with an inactive lifestyle can cause back pain. Physical inactivity tends to be the primary cause of back pain. Sitting for long hours in front of any screen should be avoided.

Poor or improper posture may also lead to back pain. Sleeping on a bed not designed for the unique contours of your back may also worsen the problem. The chair you sit on, and the desk you work on also need to be ergonomic.

In sum, a lack of exercise and being obese are the most common factors that contribute to back pain and other disorders.

How to Avoid Back Pain With a Healthy Lifestyle

Relaxing and muscle-strengthening exercises should be practiced. An active lifestyle should be implemented. Avoid lifting heavy items. You should pay close attention to your posture and how you sit.

Maintain a healthy weight and body mass index by eating a healthy and balanced diet. If you need to use a desktop or laptop for work, ensure that your chair and desk are comfortable. Also, if you smoke, you should quit as soon as possible.

Physical therapy can also help boost circulation, increase mobility, and strengthen your muscles. Physiotherapy treatment can prevent back pain and effectively treat people who suffer from acute, subacute, and chronic back pain.

Health Matters

A poor posture can contribute to back pain and other musculoskeletal ailments. Living a sedentary lifestyle will negatively impact your posture and overall energy levels and wellbeing.

When you spend most of your time indoors and in front of a tv, computer, phone, tablet, or video game device, you will be harming your eyes, back, and many other parts of your body.

It is important to exercise outdoors, maintain a healthy weight, and undergo physical therapy to optimize your physical health.

Sources:

Does Fibromyalgia Cause Back Pain? (creakyjoints.org)

Why Does My Back Hurt? 27 Possible Causes of Back Pain (webmd.com)

Back pain – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic

Common Causes of Back Pain – Types & Treatment | NIAMS (nih.gov)

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