Nearly 10 million working days are lost each year for adults aged 25-64 due to back pain – and around 80% of us will suffer from back pain at some point in our lives.
Most cases of back pain are self-limiting and probably go within a few weeks.
So what causes back pain?
It is always important to rule out specific causes such as cancer, infections and fractures, so seek advice from a medical professional if you’re concerned.
Thankfully, the vast majority of back pain cases have no sinister cause and are called non-specific, and there are a wide variety of therapies that can be useful.
Vitamin D is an important nutrient for bone health. Our main source is from the action of sunlight on our skin although we can get some from foods such as oily fish and eggs. Many of us struggle to get enough from food and require supplementation. People with dark skin are at higher risk of being low in Vitamin D.
The key to managing back pain is to understand what the causes are for you. I suffered with back pain for 10 years and tried many different therapies that would give me short term relief.
It was only when I saw movement specialist, Gary Ward (who featured in Doctor in the House series 1), that my pain went away for good. He helped me to re-train my movement patterns.
Here are some simple tips that may help you with your back pain.
1. Get up regularly from your desk
Set an alarm once every hour to remind you to get up and move around. Perhaps try a standing desk, a different chair or even a Swiss ball.
2. Prioritise active relaxation
This could be meditation, yoga, or simply going for a walk.
3. Find a regular form of activity that you enjoy
You are much more likely to engage with an activity long term if you enjoy it. I suggested Tai Chi to Mark because he loved martial arts.
4. Try and be as active as possible
Don’t underestimate the benefits of regular walking