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Understanding Spinal Health: Common Issues,Causes and Prevention Strategies

Understanding Spinal Health: Common Issues,Causes and Prevention Strategies

Spinal health is the backbone to a healthy lifestyle. It serves as the main support structure for the entire body, while also protecting vital organs like the spinal cord. It is also responsible for aiding our locomotion and movement.It is safe to say that the spine is one of the most important parts of our body.However, despite it being so, it is seldom that a spine is properly tended to when we carry out our day to day activities. Some behaviours might seem harmless, but can have long term consequences, especially later in life.

This article aims to dive into the various issues that your spine can face and what can be the cause of said issues.It will also list out the various ways you can prevent such diseases and problems from arising.By understanding what issues can hamper spinal health, what causes them and how they can be prevented, spinal health can be preserved and also improved, allowing a healthier lifestyle for those who take the time to educate themselves about it, and put into practice the prescribed preventions.

Common Spinal Issues
First let us look at the myriad of issues that can hamper spinal health in a human being. It might not be obvious or painful in the short term, but even discomfort that might seem minor at the moment, could compound into irreversible and lasting pain later in life. 

One of the most common spinal issues can vary in its severity depending on the cause, is back pain. This is a particularly painful discomfort along the spine that can manifest as a consequence of a number of other issues, which may or may not be directly related to the spine.

Back pain is the most common spinal health issue because it is a symptom of a number of diseases that can originate due to improper spinal care. This could be a consequence of anything from muscle strain to obesity, to something as serious as a herniated disk. However, suffering from back pain does not automatically mean that there is something severely wrong. It could just be a result of bad posture that can be corrected fairly easily with exercise. 

However, spine related health issues can be a result of the natural process of ageing as well. As the body ages, the intervertebral disks begin to lose water, which makes them immensely susceptible to wear and tear. This causes the vertebrae to squeeze the sensitive spinal cord and adjacent nerves, resulting in what we call Spinal Stenosis

Not all spinal issues are a subject to the body ageing. Some also happen during periods of growth in the body, such as adolescence.  Scoliosis is the sideways curvature of the spine. While mild cases might subject the patient to some discomfort at best, more serious cases can lead to issues with the heart and the lungs, particularly with regards to their day to day functioning.

Common reasons for Spinal Issues:
Spinal issues can have a varied set of causes.These can range from small everyday things to major traumas and even growth disorders.One of the most common reasons for ill spinal health is bad posture.Posture is not something that a lot of people focus on.Especially in today’s day and age, where an average human being spends an enormous amount of time hooked to a device due to professional and personal commitments, posture might be the one thing that they might be least concerned with.However,the way in which we hold our body by using our spine on a day to day basis can have severe consequences if not done right.

As people spend more time sitting while they work, they have also become more accepting of decreased physical activity in their daily life, which can cause a fair amount of problems for the spine. It particularly affects the muscles that aid in movement along our back, which could atrophy at a micro level due to prolonged disuse, putting more strain on them when they are put into action. 

Thanks to more work requiring people to sit down and not lead an as physically active lifestyle as would be appropriate, has also given rise to obesity. Excess body fat can cause the spine to endure extra pressure for basic activities, which could lead to temporary spinal issues. Severe cases have also led to permanent spinal discomfort, which may or may not be treatable through medical  means. 

While some of these causes might be preventable, there are other types of issues that can be the cause of bad spinal health. Despite all that is available and possible thanks to modern medicine, there are still genetic vulnerabilities that can cause a host of issues directly related to spinal health. Scoliosis is one such issue that is caused due to genetic abnormality. This could also manifest as low bone density, which can affect the spine along with the entire skeletal system or other muscular issues that can also affect spinal health. 

Spinal health is also greatly affected, as is other parts of the body, by physical trauma. While the spine is a sturdy part of the body (which it should be for being able to support our upright posture) it is just as susceptible to damage. While direct trauma to the spine can sometimes cause only temporary issues, it can lead to permanent or long lasting negative effects, depending on the age at which such a trauma was received (such as impaired height or restricted motor function) 

What can be done to preserve spinal health?

While there are multiple ways to preserve your spinal health, here are a few simple steps that can help you stave off day to day spinal attrition in your everyday life:

* Exercising regularly can not only strengthen the muscles that support your spine, it can also stop premature drying of the intervertebral disk, which can prolong the health of your spinal cord.

* Proper posture can help in increasing the lifespan of your spine. Maintaining your posture can result in proper growth of the spine, and also alleviate everyday pains and aches, increasing your stamina to sit down and concentrate, while also staving off the need to treat back pains with external medication. 

* Healthy weight management can also aid tremendously in maintaining the health of your spine. This can be achieved by exercising regularly and adhering to moderate dietary constraints. These, while also directly aiding in the upkeep of the spine, and help you manage and maintain your ideal weight, keeping inappropriate pressure from your spine. 

* By also maintaining proper workstations, with appropriate levelling for your neck, eyeline to your computer and the amount of time spent at the workstation, you can grossly improve your spinal health, in tandem with the above mentioned habits. 

* While looking for solutions can yield significantly positive results, your physician is still the best person to take care of your physical health. Schedule regular check ups with your doctor, so as to catch any major issues in your spine before they become too massive to handle. Staying on top of things that might seem minor discomforts at the moment could actually aid your spinal health in the future, by preventing them from becoming major issues.

* Spinal health needs to be a priority for any individual for their overall wellbeing.  By keeping simple things like posture in mind, and being regular in bodily upkeep, whether it be through a diet or through a clinical plan,  spinal health can be maintained with remarkable ease, which could result in a much healthier lifestyle and a tremendously productive daily life.

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