When we talk about health, the same few systems always seem to come up — organs like the heart and brain, and your muscular system. And while there’s no denying those should be taken care of, one major part of your body often gets left out of the conversation — your spine.
The spine is your body’s main support structure. Together, these 33 bones and 7 vertebrae keep you upright and connect different parts of your skeleton to one another. So why is spine health often left to the side? Take time this week to focus on your spine health, and, even more importantly, improve it.
1. Shoes affect more than just your feet.
If you’ve ever spent the day walking in shoes with bad arch support, you know that bad shoes can take a toll on your feet. But did you also know that your shoes can affect your back and spine? Good shoes are the supportive base that helps keep your spine and body properly aligned.
If you’re in the market for new shoes, shop for ones that are snug (but not tight), have good arch support, and protect your ankle.
2. Treat yourself to a massage once in a while.
Massages are a lot more than just enjoyable, they’re actually a relaxing form of therapy. Therapeutic massage can encourage blood flow and help heal damaged areas. Massages can also prevent back problems from ever happening by decreasing muscle tension and increasing endorphin levels.
3. Get out of your seat.
If you’re one of the millions of people that spends 8+ hours a day sitting at a desk, you probably already know how too much sitting affects your health. From stiff back muscles to neck and shoulder pain, sitting has become the new big health scare.
While you may not be able to avoid sitting down completely, there are things everyone can do to get themselves up and moving, like:
- Walking over to a coworker instead of emailing them.
- Taking a short walk every hour.
- Switching to a standing desk.
- Getting a desk chair with more back support.
If you’re having difficulties with a bone, muscle, tendon, nerve, or joint, the experts at Methodist Hospital are here to help. Our orthopedic specialists take an interdisciplinary team approach to care and offer dynamic surgical techniques and modern technologies when providing high-quality orthopedic services to our patients.