Caring For Your Spine In The New Year
Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi
If you’re hoping to make some New Year’s resolutions this year, you may be like the millions of other Americans who are considering making changes to become a healthier version of themselves in the new year. But what area of your health should you focus on, and what types of changes should you consider? In today’s blog, we share why it’s important to keep your spine in mind when considering New Year’s resolutions, and we discuss some simple resolutions you can take to make your spine healthier in the new year.
Putting Your Spine First In The New Year
One of the biggest reasons why it’s so important to put your spine health first this year is because you only get one spine, and it takes a beating each and every day. Your spine helps to disperse the stress of your body weight as you move and when you’re seated, and over time this can lead to spinal degeneration. This degeneration occurs slowly as we start to age, but the process can be expedited if we have poor spine care habits. Help prolong the health and function of your spine by resolving to take better care of it in the new year, and you can do that by keeping the following tips in mind.
- Take Up One Spine-Strengthening Activity Or Hobby – Start off by taking on a new active habit that will help to strengthen your spine and its supportive muscles. The activity doesn’t have to specifically focus on your spine, but it should challenge it physically and serve to strengthen it. Activities like yoga, swimming or dancing can all help to make your spine stronger and promote total body wellness.
- Start Doing Regular Posture Checks – Some people believe that if they aren’t doing anything physically challenging, then they aren’t putting their spine at risk of an injury. That’s simply not true. Prolonged sitting, especially if you have poor posture, can be extremely hard on your spine. Strive to regularly conduct self-assessments of your posture when you’re driving, when you’re in the office or while you’re lounging at home. You’ll want to keep your head directly above your shoulders to avoid putting excess pressure on your lumbar or cervical spine. When you start conducting regular posture checks and making simple adjustments, you prolong the life of your vertebrae and discs.
- Lose Some Weight – Losing weight is the most common resolution that people make in the new year, but weight loss can have the added benefit of being extremely good for your spine health. For every one pound you lose, that’s equivalent to four pounds of stress removed from your spine, so even a little weight loss goes a long way for your spine. If you truly want to have a healthier spine this year, slim down a little bit through diet and exercise.
- Add A Dedicated Spinal Strengthening Workout To Your Weekly Routine – Our first tip suggests that you should take up a hobby that gets you physically active and puts some healthy stress on your spine, albeit indirectly. To really care for your spine, add a workout to your weekly routine that specifically targets key areas of your spine. Instead of just rotating between arm day and leg day, add in some exercises that specifically strengthen your spine. Directly and indirectly targeting your spine will help to improve its physical function going forward.
- Take Care Of Minor Or Chronic Spinal Issues – Finally, resolve to take care of any small or lingering spinal issues when they develop in the new year. Don’t just try to keep pushing through discomfort while hoping that it will go away on its own. Oftentimes if you don’t confront a problem head on, it will only get worse. You owe it to your spine to take care of problems before they snowball into a larger issue. If you’re having trouble figuring out the best ways to rid yourself of a minor or chronic back issue, reach out to Dr. Sinicropi.
For more tips or for help making your spine stronger in the new year, call Dr. Sinicropi and the team at the Midwest Spine & Brain Institute today at (651) 430-3800.