As the new year approaches, you might be thinking about ways in which you could improve the health of your spine in the year ahead. New Year’s resolutions are a great way to evaluate the habits you have developed this year and ways you can improve them. Whatever your resolutions are, there are four important ways you can build healthier habits your spine will thank you for.
If you’re suffering from back pain, there are changes you can make to alleviate or reduce those symptoms and help you become the best version of yourself. Keep reading for some simple ways to start your New Year with a healthy and happy spine.
1. Stretching and Exercise Improve Your Spine Health
Exercising is so great for your spine health because it targets the weak core muscles that support the spine, strengthening them for the long term. Exercises such as crunches, situps and pushups prevent spine and back injuries from occurring in the future. Aerobic exercises are great for contributing to a healthy spine by encouraging blood flow to the tissues that can help with providing repair and nutrients to any injured tissue.
Stretching is another great way to support spine health. Practices like yoga especially assist in creating flexibility and strength in your core and back muscles. You don’t have to exercise for an extended duration to reap the benefits, about 30 minutes each day will keep your spine healthy.
Great examples of spine-bolstering exercises include:
- Walking, jogging, or running 30 minutes daily
- Stretching and yoga
- Strength training such as crunches and pushups
Incorporating these habits into your daily routine can help support the spine and keep it healthy into the New Year.
2. Prioritize a Good Night’s Sleep for a Healthy Spine
Sleep is important for spine health because the body uses that time to restore and recover. To gain the benefits of a good night’s sleep, it’s essential that you also prioritize a long duration of sleep which allows you to experience the REM stage of deep sleep. This New Year’s goal will have to work in conjunction with another goal to promote the ability to relax and stay asleep, which can be difficult depending on your spine health.
Some good strategies to improve your quality of sleep are:
- Removing any devices such as TVs, phones or video games from the bedroom
- Avoiding any caffeinated or alcoholic beverages before bedtime
- Have a set bedtime and follow it consistently
- Create a bedtime routine that involves relaxation techniques like reading, hot tea, meditation, or journaling
- Sleeping with a pillow under your knees
- Investing in a semi-firm mattress
When you prioritize a good night’s sleep your spine will be able to restore and recover for the next day.
3. Give Up Cigarettes to Alleviate Back Pain
This New Year’s resolution is challenging but can make all the difference in your spine and back health. To alleviate back and spine pain, consider quitting this coming year. Cigarettes often hinder blood vessels causing pain, discomfort and restricting blood supply to cells that need it most.
With this challenge, your cells can’t heal as quickly and are more likely to die. When you quit smoking, cells are restored with the oxygen, blood, and nutrients they need. This will help you heal from back and spine injuries much faster than when smoking.
4. Maintain Your Weight and Drink Water for Spine Health
Exercising in conjunction with weight maintenance is a great strategy to promote spine health in the new year. Having a balanced diet will support your bones and muscles to ensure that they have the strength to tackle any back and spine injuries or prevent them from happening in the future.
Water is an important component of maintaining equilibrium in your body. Drinking water supports your muscles and bones getting the nutrients they need and giving your body the tools it needs to function properly. Getting enough water is challenging but consider investing in a fun water bottle that you will love to have around all day to remind you to drink more of it.
Consult an Expert Spine Specialist to Incorporate Healthy Habits for Your Spine This New Year
To start your year off with a healthy spine, you may have to incorporate new healthy habits or practice those healthy habits more consistently. Back and spine injuries can be caused by many factors, and it is best to consult a spine specialist to alleviate pain and discomfort or prevent it from happening in the new year. Every spine injury is unique and needs careful guidance from a spine expert who understands what is safe for you.
When you trust NJ Spine and Orthopedic, you receive expert care and guidance regarding your spine and diagnosis. We are proud to offer personalized treatment plans that deliver skillful care and guidance. Our doctors work diligently and thoroughly to treat your pain, identify its cause and advise you on the best treatment to help you step into the new year with a healthy spine. To schedule an appointment with our skillful spine specialists, fill out our contact form or call (866) 272 9271.