Your Stress Might Be Worsening Your Back Pain – Here's What To Do

If you're currently suffering from back pain and consider yourself to have a significant degree of stress in your life, here's the bad news – these two things might share a close connection. Whether your stress caused your back pain or the former simply made the latter worse, stress can be detrimental to the health of your back for multiple reasons. Namely, stress causes your muscles to tighten. Tight back muscles can cause pain in their own right, but in extreme conditions, can exert pressure on your spine to the point at which it shifts position and causes pain. While a chiropractor will be able to improve your spine alignment, he or she will also recommend that you take action to reduce your pain. Here are three ways to do it.

Substitute Green Tea For Other Beverages

On the surface, what you eat or drink might not seem to have a connection with your back pain, but the reality is that certain consumable products can enhance your stress, which can then affect your back. Caffeinated products such as coffee and soda can play a role in your stress by making you feel jittery. It's ideal to limit your exposure to these drinks and, instead, enjoy a cup of green tea. Its mild taste aside, green tea can actually serve to reduce your overall stress level, which can beneficial for your back health.

Give Meditation A Try

Whether you visit a yoga studio for a meditation class, seek private instruction in your home, or simply watch some videos online and follow along, this ancient practice is known for its stress-reducing benefits. While many people find a quiet location in which to meditate, others use the breathing and visualization techniques during their daily life to help them get through stressful moments. Meditation can teach you the value of focusing on your breath when you're stuck in a traffic jam, for example, instead of allowing it to raise your stress and worsen your back pain.

Keep A Stress Journal

Some people who are regularly stressed find it helpful to keep a stress journal. This notebook isn't an opportunity to gather all your negative thoughts and wallow in misery – rather, it's a chance to notice trends that contribute to your stress so that you can make healthy changes to help your back pain. For example, if you notice that the vast majority of your stressful moments take place at work, you might wish to speak to your HR rep and see if there are workplace changes you can make to feel better.