6 Tips for Maintaining Back Health in the Senior Years

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The back is responsible for supporting much of the weight of the human body, so it is a key part to remaining mobile in the golden years. However, it’s easy for the back to be damaged during daily activities. Seniors who want to keep their backs as healthy as possible may need to exercise some caution. These tips can help seniors keep the muscles and bones of the back in working condition. 

1. Consume the Right Vitamins 

The small vertebrae of the spine are susceptible to getting cracked or ground down if a senior has osteoporosis. This health condition occurs when the bones lose density because the body does not have the right nutrients to build healthy bone tissue. Seniors need to make sure they are eating plenty of calcium and getting enough vitamin D for their bodies to absorb the calcium. 

If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated provider of home care. Centennial Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services.

2. Strengthen Core Muscles 

The core muscles in the back and stomach provide valuable support to the spine. Strengthening these muscles ensures the spine moves properly and provides cushioning in the event of a fall. Seniors who are concerned about back health can talk to a physical therapist or personal trainer to find exercises that support the back. 

3. Avoid Dangerous Activities 

Seniors should avoid attempting to lift heavy objects, as many back injuries happen because unnecessary stress is placed on the spine. Back injuries can also happen when making sudden, sharp movements when playing sports like golf or tennis. 

Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Centennial respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.

4. Do Flexibility Exercises 

Hours of sitting around tends to put a lot of pressure along the spine, making certain types of back injuries more common. Flexibility exercises can help seniors maintain back health by ensuring the joints in the back go through their full range of motion without injury. Gentle stretches like yoga are particularly helpful because they can decompress and loosen up the back. 

5. Give the Back Time to Rest 

A lot of seniors end up with chronic back pain because they try to ignore twinges of discomfort and continue physical activities after a back injury, which can end up causing permanent injuries that are difficult to fix. As soon as a senior feels pain in the back, he or she should take a break, rest, and consider icing the area. It’s best to seek treatment as soon as possible before a sprain or other minor issue worsens. 

6. Use Supportive Furniture 

To maintain back health, it is important to use good posture at all times. Seniors can enhance their posture by selecting supportive chairs and couches that hold the body in an upright position. It may also be helpful to get a mattress that is firm enough to keep the back from sagging into contorted positions while sleeping.

Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted Centennial home care provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help. To create a customized in-home care plan for your aging loved one, call us at 303.957.3100.