Back pain – six ways to improve your posture and prevent lower backache

Back pain is a common condition that affects most people at some point in their lifetime, according to the NHS.

It’s usually nothing to worry about, and should get better by itself within a few weeks or months.

Back pain could be relieved by changing your posture. While it’s unlikely to resolve the root cause of the pain, it may help to get rid of muscle tension.

One of the best ways to improve your posture is to make sure you have maximum support for all parts of the chair when sitting down.

Maintaining the best possible support from the chair should prevent putting too much strain on muscles and soft tissues.

Similarly, when sitting down on chair, make sure all three normal back curves – the neck, shoulders and lower back – are fully supported by the back of the chair.

It’s never too late to improve your posture, and even the smallest of changes can help you feel more comfortable, said comfort chair specialist HSL.

“Your knees should be at a right angle and either even with, or slightly higher than your hips,” said HSL’s Chief Occupational Therapist, Julie Jennings. “Try to avoid crossing your legs.

“Your feet should be flat on the floor to ensure you have a firm and stable base for your seating position.

“Leave a small gap between the back of the seat and your knees; this allows for good circulation and avoids pressure on essential nerves and capillaries.

“Try to avoid sitting in the same position for more than 30 minutes and if necessary, use the chair arms to support you when standing up.”

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It’s also crucial to avoid putting on the edge of your seat for a long period of time, HSL said.

Many people won’t be aware of the effects of poor posture until they have health complications as a result, it warned.

That includes provoking back pain, as the blood vessels and nerves constrict.

The stress from bad posture may also cause problems with muscles, discs and joints.

Lower back pain is the most common type of back pain in the UK, said the NHS.

The condition should usually get better by itself within a few weeks or months.

For short-term relief from backache, patients could try using painkillers, it said.

Speak to a GP if you have back pain and a numbness around the genitals.

A swelling in the back, difficulty passing urine, or chest pain should also be seen by a doctor if it’s accompanied by back pain.


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