There are a lot of things we can’t control about aging, but back pain isn’t one of them. While it’s certainly true that our bodies go through changes that can increase our chances of having more aches and pains as we grow older, that doesn’t mean you have to sit back and wait for them to start.
At Herald Square Chiropractic and Sport in New York, New York, our team treats a wide range of back issues, including painful conditions like arthritis, degenerative disc disease, sciatica, and herniated discs.
Anyone can develop back pain from an unexpected accident or fall, and age can also play a role. However, just because you age, that doesn’t mean back pain is inevitable.
In this blog, our team offers insight into why you may have age-related back pain and how to reduce your risk for this problem as you grow older.
What’s causing that pain in your back
It’s normal for the structures in your spine to begin breaking down as you age. This can occur for many reasons, ranging from age-related changes to lifestyle, previous injuries, or conditions like osteoporosis.
One common cause of back pain involves progressive degenerative disc disease, which affects the protective, shock-absorbing discs sitting between the vertebrae in the spine. Over time or due to trauma, these discs can break down. When this occurs, the soft center of the disc pushes outward through the exterior.
As the center — or nucleus — of the disc bulges out of position, it can press on nearby nerves. This leads to back pain, numbness, or tingling that also radiates down into your arms and legs. This common problem, called a herniated disc, can trigger debilitating pain and limited range of motion in your back.
Other common causes of age-related back pain include:
- Herniated discs
- Spinal stenosis
- Bone spurs
- Vertebral compression fractures
All of these conditions can develop slowly over time and worsen without the proper treatment.
How to avoid back pain as you age
Our team knows age-related changes in the back can impact your quality of life. That’s why we offer comprehensive treatment services for existing back pain, along with lifestyle strategies and guidance to keep your spine healthy at every age.
Our team knows that you don’t have to experience back pain just because you put another candle on your birthday cake. Instead, we recommend taking these steps to reduce your risk of age-related back pain as you get older.
Move your body every day
Did you know that a sedentary lifestyle significantly increases your risk for persistent back pain as you age? To avoid this common pitfall, make exercise a priority.
For best results, get at least 30 minutes of exercise every day, even if you take a brisk walk around your neighborhood. This will keep your blood pumping and your back muscles strong so they can help support your spine.
Be mindful when you move
Whether you lift heavy objects for your work or a hobby, you could be setting yourself up for a back injury or pain. To protect yourself, make sure you always use the proper lifting techniques to avoid muscle tears and trauma to your spine.
Our team can provide you with personalized guidance to protect your back whenever you have to lift objects or engage in other strenuous activities.
Eat to maximize your health
Eating the right things does your body good — especially as you get older. Not only does a healthy, nutritious diet ensure you get the ensure you need to function, but it keeps your body strong so it can perform.
Beyond that, following a healthy diet can help you achieve and maintain a healthy body weight, which takes unnecessary pressure off your back, preserves your spine health, and reduces age-related injuries and pain.
Don’t ignore pain
You don’t have to let back pain slow you down. In fact, trying to ignore a problem because you think it’s simply part of getting older can cause more harm than good. Instead, see an expert when you notice pain to treat the problem and prevent issues from becoming worse, including age-related degeneration.
If you have back pain, our team can help create a personalized treatment plan to get your symptoms under control.
Ready to get started on the road to a healthier, stronger back? Schedule a consultation by calling the Herald Square Chiropractic and Sport at 646-454-8264 today.