How many hours can you sit each day?

There’s nothing wrong with sitting, it gives our body some rest and in some cases also a feeling of relaxation but anything in large quantities is never good for us and its applies to sitting too. For example sitting too long at your work desk can have adverse affects on your back and spine and so to combat that pain its always optimal to get up and talk a short walk for 5 minutes after every hour of sitting.


What’s even better is that recent research has helped figure out the optimum amount of time we should actually be sitting. This is great news for office executives and workers who are concerned about the affects of sitting on long term back pain. Why should you be worried just as much as any other person who spends most of their work day at a desk? Medical researchers have long warned that prolonged sitting is dangerous, associated with a significantly higher risk of heart disease, diabetes, obesity, cancer and depression, as well as muscle and joint problems.


A statement by the British journal of sports medicine states that we should take breaks for at least 2 hours of the 8 hours we spend sitting at our office desks. It is also recommended that we should work up to spending at least half of the eight hours workday in light intensity activities such as a quick stretch or a fast walk for 5 minutes around your office.


Why does sitting have such a massive impact on our body. Director of Active working, Bradley Gavin states “Metabolism slows down 90 percent after 30 minutes of sitting. The enzymes that move the bad fat from your arteries to your muscles, where it can get burned off, slow down. The muscles in your lower body are turned off. And after two hours, good cholesterol drops 20 percent. Just getting up for five minutes is going to get things going again. These things are so simple they’re almost stupid.”


Other additional research has also shown that people who tend to stand and move through out the day are usually 15% more productive than their counterparts. Therefore these light intensity activities done throughout the day are essential to maintain good health, steer clear from any future back pain and finally also remain productive.

Have we found the hidden source of back pain?

Back pain is probably the most common chronic pain for adults, with an increasing amount of patients everyday and more than a hundred different solutions to it, have we never discovered the true source of it?


Researchers might have found the root cause of the back pain that most of us face and it might be related to the SI joint, which is the joint that connects the pelvis to the spine. It is estimated that SI joint is responsible for at least 30% of all back pain cases. While the joint itself is the most durable part of the body but day-to-day wear and tear are the reasons why it later becomes dysfunctional. Activities like heavy lifting, constant bending over and crouching can have an adverse affect on the SI joint.


While SI joint dysfunction is hard to spot, it’s harder to treat. Doctors sometimes think there are issues with the spinal discs—herniated or degenerative—or the sciatic nerve when it’s actually the SI joint. Often the pain the patient describes leads them to those conclusions.


So if you suffer from chronic back pain and still haven’t figured out the root cause of it, this might be it. Consult your doctor on tests for the SI joint pain, which will help identify the severity of the problem, if you do suffer from it the treatment for it is fairly painless and does not require surgery.

Is depression related to back pain?

New research has found that mental health could have a major affect on physical health too. Doctors have found that depression may increase the risk of back pain over time, the more severe the depression the higher the risk.


A meta analysis has indicated that depression is related to lower back pain. The analysis of 19 studies has clearly shown that symptoms of depression are directly related to lower back pain. Those with depression are 60% more likely to suffer from some sort of lower back pain, as opposed to those with no depression.


Those who suffer from severe depression had increased risk, with almost 2.5 times that of those with just minor depression symptoms. It was also found that depression coupled with old age did factor into this Meta analysis and that older men or women were likelier to develop back pain from depression.


Marina Pinheiro from the researcher from University of Sydney who carried out the meta analysis said that depression and lower back pain share common biological pathways and neurotransmitters such as serotonin and norepinephrine and a deficiency of these neurotransmitters [could be] expected to affect both mood and pain thresholds, possibly explaining the relationship between [the two].


Some of the added reasons that depressed people are likely to suffer from back pain is due to the fact that they become less physically and socially active and suffer from sleep disturbances that add to the stress on the spine. Therefore its now important to be able to identify depression especially with older patients in order to mitigate any lower back pain that may develop over time.

Myths about back pain

There are several myths about back pain that influence peoples decisions before they even consult a doctor. In reality the treatment of back pain is not as simple as it looks, the treatment of back pain is related to the spine which is one of the most crucial parts of our body, therefore sometimes we end up causing more harm to our body when believing these myths.


Back pain gets worse with age?


Many people with back pain in their early 40’s and 30’s think that their back pain will get worse when they reach their 50’s. This fact is completely untrue. The fact is that back pain is very common in younger demographics and if they tend to it may actually go away by the time they’re in their 50’s.


Back pain is just a part of life and I should live with it?


Back pain should never be left untreated, if your pain is only getting worse over time. It is recommended that you consult your doctor. Chronic pain is not something you can live with; it will get in the way of your daily activities and also in the way of you actually working on subduing it.


I must protect my back to avoid further back pain?


It quite common that people with back pain actually over protects their backs, which causes more damage to your back than good. To stay healthy the spine needs stretching and exercise, bed rest and protecting the back does the complete opposite. Proper exercise and posture are the key to lowering back pain. Using casts and suspenders to artificially avoid back pain will only add to the pain and should be avoided.

5 inexpensive ways to ease lower back pain

Chronic lower back pain plagues millions of people every year; age is no bar for lower back pain. Medicine focuses more on solving the anatomical problems and not really the pain that causes discomfort. Here’s our list of 6 easy ways to get past lower back pain:


  1. Get restorative sleep


Pain is the number one cause of insomnia, if you’re not sleeping right then you’re only going through more pain. Restorative sleep means getting your body to sleep by numbing out the pain, this can be done eating the right food, cutting down on caffeine and spiritually putting your mind in a peaceful state either through prayer or medication.


  1. Soothe the pain with temperature


Applying either cold or hot packs to the pain points on your lower back can extensively accelerate the healing process and also relieve pain. It’s also the most accessible the cheapest way to get past that chronic pain at any time of the day.


  1. Stretch your hamstrings


Yes your hamstrings are directly related to your lower back but they definitely have an affect on your lower back. Tight hamstrings actually put pressure and stress on the lower back and stretching your hamstrings through some lunges or basic stretches can go a long way .


  1. Exercise your mid body muscles


The abs play a major role for your lower back. Therefore exercising your core helps take off stress from your lower back. Your abs support your lower lumbar spine, if you’re obese then your first step to lowering lower back pain should be to lose that fat. The importance of core exercises for your lower back is so important that 58% of people who currently suffer from lower back pain wish that they had done more exercise focused in this area of the body .


  1. Endorphin release


You would be surprised at how much endorphins help in pain relief. They are treated as natural pain killer that already exist in your body. Therefore releasing endorphins helps block out pain signals that come from your lower back. Endorphin release can be triggered by taking deep breaths, aerobics and also being active.

Obesity is the leading cause of back pain


Obesity is quickly becoming the leading cause for chronic pain. The current lifestyle changes that people go through due to easy access to fast food and conveniences are only adding to the obesity numbers year after year. This in turn is also increasing the number of cases of patients coming in with back pain issues at very young ages.


The American Obesity Association reports that musculoskeletal pain and back pain are now very common amongst nearly one third of the people that are classified as obese. More and more obese people now complain that they feel less able to complete everyday activities than those with other chronic conditions.


The reason obese people face more back pain pressure is due to the body having to compensate for the extra weight, which causes the spine to become tilted and stressed unevenly. As a result of that the spin over time starts to lose its support and forms an unnatural curvature, which has adverse and painful effects on the body especially while carrying out day-to-day activities.


The most common danger from obesity to the spine and joints is a herniated disc. This is when discs and other spinal structures are damaged from having to compensate for the pressure extra weight on the back.


Overall the only way to comeback back pain due to obesity is weight loss and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. The effects of obesity only get worse over time and its important for those who are overweight to act upon it in their young age rather than later.