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Is Standing Or Sitting Better For Lower Back Pain

Different Levels And Types Of Pain

Is sitting or standing better for lower back pain?

Like with most injuries, pain levels can vary depending on the person and the severity of the trauma. For example, some patients may experience lower back pain when sitting but not standing. On the other hand, some patients may only experience lower middle back pain when sitting. The different types of pain experienced could feel like:

  • A sharp pain rather than dull aches: This type of pain could result from a torn ligament or muscle.
  • A radiating pain that moves from various parts of the lower back: This pain could originate from nerve compression.
  • A numbness or tingling sensation: This feeling will originate specifically in the groin and glutes area.
  • Incontinence: The intensity of the lower back pain may affect your ability to control your bladder.
  • Sudden leg weakness: The inability to walk is related to nerve damage, usually linked to spinal stenosis.

Many people may experience severe lower back pain when sitting down. It may feel likea constant ache deep within the muscle or a sharp jabbing sensation as if someone is stabbing you with needles. If you suffer from leg weakness, incontinence and numbness in the groin and glutes, you might have cauda equina syndrome and should seek medical attention immediately. For some, the pain might originate from the tailbone, making it painful to sit in specific positions.

When treating your condition, its important to distinguish between acute and chronic back pain.

Can A Standing Desk Reduce My Back Pain

Sitting too much can cause a number of health-related problems. These include increased risk for heart disease, diabetes and blood clots. In addition, low back and neck pain can occur when you sit for long periods of time. Most jobs today involve a significant amount of time sitting, and poor posture when you sit can lead to back pain. Sitting in a slouched position increases the pressure in the lower back, in particular the discs. Often times, there are preexisting problems in the lower back, and poor posture will exacerbate the issue.

Standing desks have become very popular over the past few years, and there are numerous potential health benefits associated with standing versus sitting. Some studies have shown that you burn slightly more calories when standing versus sitting, which can add up over time. In addition, some people find themselves more productive when standing periodically throughout the day. But can incorporating a standing desk into your day reduce low back pain?

Before making the purchase for a stand-up desk, consider these three steps first:

  • Work on your sitting posture. Try to sit in a neutral position with your lower back straight and your shoulders pulled back. Improving your sitting posture alone may be enough to reduce low back pain.
  • Add lumbar support. Place a small pillow or cushion behind your lower back. This can help keep your back in a better position when sitting, or serve as a reminder to focus on your posture.
  • Further Dangers Of Long Periods Of Standing

    Unfortunately the pain from standing isn’t limited to your back.

    As it can also lead to:

    • Pain in your joints such as your knees and ankles.
    • Tightness and pain in your neck and shoulders.
    • Foot pain.
    • Varicose veins.
    • Muscle fatigue.
    • Problems with circulation that can lead to dizziness, lack of concentration and energy, and shortness of breath.

    And a recent study has found that people who stood for prolonged periods were twice as likely to get heart disease than those who spent the time sat down.

    So if you spend a lot of time standing up, you need to find ways to minimise it’s impact.

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    Causes Of Low Back Pain

    Many factors can contribute to low back pain — from strained muscles to strained “nerves” An acute injury — lifting and twisting a heavy load, for example — can lead to low back pain. And, over time, aging causes degenerative spinal changes starting as early as the 30s or earlier. Here’s a quick overview of low back pain culprits:

    • Overuse of muscles and ligaments, caused by a competitive tennis match or an ambitious day in the garden
    • Disk injury, tears or other damage to the “shock absorbers” between the spinal bones
    • Disk degeneration, the wear and tear, shrinking, and collapse of disks that can be more common with age
    • Degenerative spondylolisthesis, changes to spinal structures, which allows a vertebra to slip forward from the next vertebra
    • Spinal stenosis, narrowing of the space around the spinal cord, which puts pressure on nerve roots
    • Scoliosis, an abnormal curvature of the spine that may cause pain for some people

    How To Tell If Your Lower Back Pain Is Muscle

    Lower Back Pain from Sitting

    by Dr. Don DuffAug 20, 2019

    The low back is a fairly complicated structure, so its no wonder the majority of peopleexperts estimate up to 80% of usexperience pain in this area of our bodies at some point in our lives. In fact, back pain is one of the most common reasons for visits to the doctors office.

    The key to relieving back pain is understanding the cause. But diagnosing the of a patients pain isnt always a straightforward exercise. It could be muscle, joint, or disc-related in some cases, it may even arise from issues unrelated to the back. So how can you tell if your back pain is muscle- or disc-related, or attributable to something else entirely? Well cover all the possibilities in this post.

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    A Perching Posture Facilitates Neutral Spine

    An illustration of the spine in its neutral position

    Image source:

    The team observed a perching posture puts the spine in neutral position, reducing unsupported extraneous loading in weaker spots along the spinal column a natural alignment which may reduce low back pain. In simpler terms, for those with low back pain, perching may be the best way to sit. We put sit in quotes, because a perch is, of course, a hybrid of sitting and standing.

    Relieve Low Back Pain From Sitting

    Fortunately, low back pain when sitting and sciatica are very treatable! There are exercises for low back pain that you can do at home that are very helpful.

    A physical therapist can help teach you proper ways to tolerate prolonged sitting. Physical therapists can also provide education about proper desk ergonomics as well as teach exercises to engage the deep postural endurance muscles of the core. While sitting, it is important to maintain the natural curve of the lower back. This curve can be supported by the use of placing a rolled up towel between the small of the back and the back of the chair.

    The proper setup of your office chair may also need to be analyzed or adjusted. Also, a postural stabilizing muscle called the transverse abdominis needs to contract to stabilize the vertebrae in your spine and take pressure off of the ligaments, in order to reduce low back pain.

    Proper Posture Can Help With Back Pain When Sitting

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    How To Relieve The Pain

    If you’re experiencing back pain when sitting, your impulse may be to lie down and then try to slowly progress back to sitting, says Dr. Atlas. But this is the wrong approach. You should lie down to relieve the pain, but the goal should be not to return to sitting, but rather to regain your ability to stand and move. “The goal isn’t to get into the chair. The goal is to start moving. Walking is better than sitting,” he says. Movement is often the best medicine when it comes to relieving pain.

    When To See A Medical Professional

    Sitting to standing when you have low back pain

    We include items we believe work for our readers. If you acquire via links on this web page, we may gain a tiny commission. Is Standing Better Than Sitting For Lower Back Pain

    Back pain is a typical issue that can interfere with an individuals job and also personal life. Fortunately, many home remedies exist to aid eliminate troublesome back pain.

    Lower back pain is a prevalent issue, creating more global handicap than any other condition. As much as 80 percent of adults will experience low back pain a minimum of once in their lives.

    People can likewise experience discomfort in other areas of the back, including the center and upper back.

    The back muscles and also spinal column support much of the bodys weight. An individual makes use of the muscular tissues for daily activities, consisting of sitting, standing, and walking.

    Over-the-counter discomfort medications, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, might help eliminate pain.

    Hi there! Im Sara and welcome to my site, 4thicft. As someone who has been suffering from back pain for most of my adult life, I understand what a pain it can be. Thankfully my back feels almost as good as new these days after much trial and error. I am also a big Yoga fan as it has helped with my posture. Hope my site helps!

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    Standing Desks For Lower Back Pain Do They Work

    In efforts to avoid the ill effects that come with sitting long hours at a desk job , people are increasingly taking to the idea of standing rather than sitting down. Upon the discovery that sitting for 6 to 10 hours a day can cause back pain and other health problems, standing desks have become quite popular.

    The switch to a standing desk can be motivated by many ailments, but one of the most common is back pain and specifically lower back pain.

    Today, we ask the question: Whats the effect of standing desks on back pain? We take a look at the facts in order to answer this common query.

    How To Get Into Bed

    To get into bed safely:

  • Feel the bed at the back of your legs
  • Brace your tummy muscles
  • Sit down slowly pushing your thighs for a bit of extra support
  • Support your body with the arm closest to the top of the bed and use your other arm to slowly lower yourself down
  • Roll onto the side you feel most comfortable
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    Why You Have Lower Back Pain When Sitting Down Or Bending

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    Lower back pain when sitting and bending over can have a major impact on a persons way of life. It can prevent most of us from performing certain tasks, such as cleaning, sitting, working and enjoying simple hobbies. Back pain is one of the most common types of pain people experience, and it is the third most common reason for doctors visits with up to 80% of adults experiencing back pain at some point in their lives.

    Of that 80%, only about 25%-30% seek medical attention. Others justify the pain as everyday aches and pains. Most of the time, lower back pain is just that a result of everyday activities and choices. The problem is knowing when the pain should be treated medically.

    For those contemplating whether to seek medical assistance, lets first break down why you have lower back pain when sitting and bending.

    Why Does Your Lower Back Hurt When Sitting And Getting Up

    Can Sitting Cause Lower Back Pain?

    There are various causes of back pain. Whereas others are self-inflicted, others are as a result of bad habits. Other potential causes of back pain may include sports injuries, muscle strains, and perhaps accidents. Though these causes may be different, on most occasions they tend to share the same symptoms. One such common symptom is the chronic ache in the middle or lower back, especially after sitting for an extended period then getting up. Typically, poor posture while sitting causes a bit of compression on the disc in your spine, leading to premature degeneration hence back pain.

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    Prevent It In The First Place

    Do workouts to strengthen the core muscles sustaining your spine, as well as your abdominal, back, and hip muscles. Prevent any type of workout that creates you to extend your back to the point of pain. Bend at the knees when lifting a hefty things, as well as maintain it close to your body with your knees a little curved as you hold it. Exercise good position: Dont plunge when you sit, and also utilize the muscles in your shoulders as well as abdominal areas to preserve your back in a neutral position.

    People with back pain in some cases also experience clinical depression. Dealing with clinical depression can lessen the discomfort due to the fact that the same chemical messengers in the mind affect your mood as well as exactly how you regard pain. The antidepressant duloxetine is FDA-approved for dealing with chronic lower back pain. A word of warning: The medicine can trigger unusual but significant adverse effects, including lowered high blood pressure as well as danger of liver failing.

    Preferred Sitting Position For Lower Back Pain

    If youre suffering lower back pain, make sure not to sit longer.

    But if youre to sit, do it with a back support, add a pillow near the curve of your back, or something like a rolled-up towel will also help.

    Avoid crossing your legs and keep your feet as flat as possible.

    Try following these, and you might be able to sit a bit longer and, most importantly, without pain.

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    Without A Versatile Ergonomic Stool Perching Increases The Load On The Lower Limbs

    The potential drawback of a perching posture is clear: working partly upright increases the load on the lower limbs. That is, if the user does not have the support of a versatile stool and cushion of a quality anti-fatigue mat.

    What the research team recommends per this drawback is to consider a sit-stand stool that supports the user and gives them fine grain control over the distribution of weight between the legs and core while working. To borrow directly from the study,

    This study has shown that posture supported, moderate dynamic seating or movement during office work may assist in reducing spinal loads and discomfort from standing. This suggests that dynamic seating designs should incorporate mechanisms that have supported mobility to allow for movement to happen before the postural control system activates movement due to discomfort. However, further research is necessary to understand how much motion is enough motion to induce positive effects for the worker.-Noguchi, Glinka, Mayberry, Noguchi, Callaghan, 2019

    The Best Posture Is The Still The Next Posture

    What Causes Low Back Pain When Sitting Versus Standing?

    This insight is consistent with findings from a similar study published in Applied Ergonomics in 2016. The team of two leading the study observed the effects of sitting, standing, and perching postures. They found that standing with no support puts the most stress on the back while perching puts the least. Each posture however possesses trade-offs between spinal load, number of postural transitions, task performance, and overall discomfort.

    The takeaway is the desk setup, to be truly ergonomic, needs to be dynamic. It should support users continuously through every position, from sit to perch to stand. The ideal ergonomic desk setup is complete with a height-adjustable sit-stand desk, multi-function chair, quality standing mat, and footstoolthat support the user as they move naturally throughout the day. Tools like these afford the broadest possible range of postural variation or movement.

    This vision for a truly ergonomic workstation resonates with our trusted adage: the next posture is the best posture.The pursuit of greater desk or office ergonomics is then a simple one: figure out how to support and encourage the next postureby the design of the workstation desk.

    To borrow directly from the 2019 study again,

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    Contact New York Spine Institute For Lower Back Pain Management

    Some individuals have a higher pain tolerance than others and may believe that they can work through the pain. Some patients lower backs hurt when sitting and bending and want to seek medical attention immediately. Either way, lower back pain that hurts when sitting, standing or lifting should not be taken lightly.

    No matter the situation, no one should have to live through life in pain, so why should you? Take the necessary steps to and live the life you want free of pain with help from New York Spine Institute. Our services include pain management, physical therapy and other medical services to help you diagnose and treat your low back pain.

    How Can A Standing Desk Help

    According to multiple studies, standing desks have been shown to offer a number of benefits for the health of the average office worker, including the alleviation of spinal-based pain. Those who used standing desks during the studies reported an improvement of up to 32% in their lower back and neck pain after using the desk for a period of several weeks. That said, its important to note that the desks used in this study were sit-stand desks — that is, the option to sit was still available, since forcing yourself to stand for hours on end can have detrimental effects on your spine just like sitting. Orthopedic spine specialists such as the team at Barrington Orthopedic Specialists strongly recommend giving yourself both options and recommend a sit to stand desk.

    If using a sit-stand desk, be sure it is set up properly. Set your desk and your monitor at an appropriate height for your back and neck to achieve the correct posture. Consider placing a mat under your feet to absorb shock, and be sure to take occasional breaks to change your position just as you would at a sitting desk.

    If youre experiencing neck or back pain, the spine specialists at Barrington Orthopedic Specialists are here to help guide you in the right direction toward living pain-free.

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