Seven Tips to Relieve Your Aching Back

Whether it’s from playing golf, working in the yard or simply sitting at a desk, statistics show that two-thirds of U.S. adults will experience back pain in their lifetime.

In your day-to-day activities, are you putting unnecessary strain on your back? Here are some ways to protect your back and relieve back pain:

* Stand up straight. Good posture will relieve pressure from your lower back.

* Stay fit. Exercise is important for keeping your muscles strong and maintaining a healthy weight. Being overweight puts more of a strain on the back. People who exercise infrequently also are more prone to back injury because their muscles are not accustomed to the exertion.

* Have an ergonomic work area. Your chair should support your lower back and help you maintain good posture. If you work on a computer, the screen should be positioned so that you do not have to tilt your head up or bend your neck down to see it. Sitting in the same position for a long period of time also strains your back. Get up from your desk and walk around several times a day.

* Evaluate your mattress. A mattress that is too soft or too firm can be a major culprit in back pain. Flip your mattress several times a year to keep it from wearing out in the spot where you sleep.

* Lift properly. Keep your back in its natural position and bend your knees. Do not twist your body or bend at the waist while lifting. If something is too heavy, do not lift it by yourself; ask for help.

* Try yoga. Yoga involves special stretching exercises that will loosen the muscles in your back.

* Use a pain relieving patch. The Absorbine Jr. Back Patch, for instance, was developed to target back pain with deep, penetrating heat. The blend of menthol, camphor and eucalyptus oil goes straight to the point of pain to relieve back spasms and muscle aches. According to the manufacturer, it relieves chronic back pain for up to eight hours.

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