There is a common belief that certain types of pain are related to age. But at what age is it normal to have aches and pains? If you ask a teenager, they’ll probably tell you that anyone over 20 is old. Actually, it’s not unusual to hear twenty and thirty-year-olds complain about the ailments of getting older.
Meanwhile, the oldest person to run a half marathon was 94. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is 85 and does regular workouts with a personal trainer. The oldest Crossfit athlete is 78. You could spend hours online researching and find many more examples like these. Getting older doesn’t necessarily mean degenerating to the point of chronic pain. Aging people can and should live an active life.
Is Back Pain a Normal Part of Getting Older?
The answer is: it depends. There are many factors that influence whether a person has chronic back pain as they get older. Some of these include a back injury, loss of bone density, loss of muscle elasticity, or an underlying medical condition, such as arthritis or osteoporosis.
While it is common for the spine to lose some of its cushioning between the vertebrae (spinal discs), a person’s lifestyle will have a significant influence on pain levels and how often they experience back pain.
For example, 30 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise five days a week decreases the risk of losing bone density. In addition, strength-training exercises ease the load on the spine, since the back muscles become stronger.
Maintaining a healthy weight throughout your life diminishes the risk of chronic pain as you age. This is because every pound of excess weight puts an additional four pounds of pressure on your joints and musculoskeletal system, which includes your back.
Yes, you can get back pain as you get older, but there are many things you can do to lower that risk and to alleviate existing pain.
Remedies for Back Pain
Following are the most effective remedies to lessen back pain that is related to age:
- Incorporate regular physical activity into your daily routine.
- Talk to your doctor about physical therapy exercises.
- Use a heating pad on your back to help relax your muscles.
- Take warm baths to relax muscles and stimulate blood flow.
- Talk to your doctor about anti-inflammatory medications.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Practice good posture.
Exercises to Help With Back Pain When You Get Older
- Walking. This is an easy choice because it’s low impact, most people can do it, and time can fly by if you do it with a friend. 30 minutes, five times a week is a good place to start. Benefits include improved circulation, joint mobility, and bone strengthening.
- Aquatic exercises. If you have osteoporosis, it’s important to be mindful that your bones are more prone to breaking. Aquatic exercises are a good choice for people with this condition since being immersed in water significantly reduces the strain on your joints and the risk of injury.
- Weight-bearing exercises. Do weight-bearing exercises at least twice a week, especially using major muscle groups. This will help your body increase bone density. As a bonus, it will help you maintain better posture, which is also essential to prevent back pain.
If You’re Experiencing Chronic Pain, Let Us Help You
At Spine Works Institute, we take pride in helping patients through safe and natural therapies. We have an entire team of chiropractors, massage therapists, and healthcare professionals who are ready to assist you.
Call us at (817) 616-0700 to schedule an appointment, or learn more about our practice here.