Being a dad can put a strain on your back, so it’s important to take care of yourself as well as your family. There are ways in which you can prevent injuries, but if the worst does happen, you should ensure that you get the correct treatment.
Causes of back injuries
There are many everyday areas of a father’s life that can cause back injuries. Often, you do these without thinking about the pressure that you’re putting on your body. For instance, carrying a heavy toddler on a particular side all the time can impact on your back muscles. Even just picking up your child for a hug can jar your back, and sitting on the floor playing for a long time can make it stiff. Lifting them in and out of cots or car seats can also cause problems if you’re not careful. On top of this, there is the issue of stress caused by the responsibility of working and looking after your family. The buildup of tension can lead to neck and upper back pain.
Preventing back injuries
Preventing an injury in the first place is always the best option. One way of doing so is to keep to a regular exercise routine, which will strengthen your muscles and reduce the risk of injury. When you’re picking your child up, think about how you’re moving. Make sure that they’re next to you, and bend from the knees so that you’re lifting using your legs, not your back muscles. You can reduce the amount of stress that is placed on a particular side of your body by carrying children at the front rather than on your hip. As a busy dad, it can be hard to relax, but you should try and wind down whenever possible to limit the degree of stress you’re under.
Treatment for back injuries
If you do suffer a back injury, it’s important to seek the appropriate treatment as soon as possible. This can aid recovery and prevent the problem from worsening. The type of treatment you require will depend on whether you’re suffering from short-term or long-term pain.
If you’ve just had a one-off incident and don’t usually suffer from back pain, the problem might get better by itself. It’s best to keep moving as much as possible to prevent the muscles from stiffening, and take painkillers if necessary. Hot and cold compresses may also be useful for reducing the pain.
For back pain that is more of a longer-term issue, you should look at your lifestyle and how you can make changes to prevent it happening again or becoming worse. Chiropractors, such as Dr. Sol Cogan at HealthQuest, are experts in reducing back pain and injuries. Rather than simply treating the symptoms, they look at what caused the injury and make changes to stop it from developing again.
Being a dad is a rewarding experience, but it can also cause you pain in many ways. No matter how old you are, it’s important to take care of your back to try and prevent issues from arising in the future.