Did you know that the primary cause of degenerative disc disease (DDD) is aging?
That’s good news. Why? Because it means that many people can prevent the onset of DDD (but not in all cases). You don’t need to take up a new sport or investing in expensive treatments to avoid DDD. It can be as simple as getting some exercise and eating right.
Are you starting to show signs of DDD? Here’s how to prevent degenerative disc disease.
Exercise isn’t a fix-all for the problems that appear as we age, but it’s the best place to start.
When we think of exercise, we often think of trying to lose weight. But the reason exercise is so good for reducing back pain, in particular, is because it increases the flow of blood to your muscles. Your blood carries oxygen and nutrients that your spine and the surrounding muscles need to continue being healthy.
It can also help reduce pain because it releases endorphins, which are the chemicals that help you feel good. Endorphins talk to your brain’s opiate receptors to reduce the perception of pain, even without fixing the cause of the pain itself.
Do you find yourself slumped in your chair six to eight hours a day? Your posture and lifestyle can have huge implications for your spine.
Preventing degenerative disc disease almost always means making changes that improve your posture.
Some of the ways you can do this include:
These tips not only prevent DDD from setting in, but they help prevent it from growing worse if you are already in the early stages.
Degenerated discs typically give you more problems when you have poor posture. Slumping, in particular, puts more pressure on your lower back. By managing your posture, you also decrease your pain.
What role could nutrition play in back pain caused by DDD? As it turns out, there’s a significant link between the two.
Studies show that changes in the severity of DDD are often correlated to your diet. When you eat well and stay hydrated, you have a positive correlation between lower pain and your diet.
Hydration is particularly important. When you become dehydrated, the material inside your spinal discs loses water, which puts more pressure on them. It can even cause your discs to collapse, which puts further pressure on your nerves and increases your pain.
Degenerative disc disease occurs as we age – but it doesn’t have to.
The thing everyone should know about DDD is that you can prevent it and save yourself a lot of pain in the process. You don’t need lots of time or money. Learning how to prevent degenerative disc disease is as simple as making some corrective lifestyle changes.
Are you in the early stages of DDD or worried about hereditary spine problems? See a spine specialist today to learn how to protect your back from pain as you age.