Back Safety

Your Back

Your back is a column of 24 vertebrae:

  • 7 Cervical
  • 12 Thoracic
  • 5 Lumbar
It also includes 5 fused vertebrae in the sacrum and the 4 coccygeal bones.

Your spine is also comprised of soft tissue (ligaments, muscles and tendons) and intervertebral discs. The discs act like cushions to absorb shock.

Working together, these structures all provide movement and stability of your body. To do this effectively, your back must stay healthy though good posture, proper material handling techniques, and implementing healthy habits.

How do I keep my back safe and healthy?

  • Adopt good postural habits

Maintain the natural curves in your back, they provide strength and support for you back.  This is especially important when doing anything strenuous (such as lifting) or when sitting/ standing for prolonged periods of time.

  • Maintain a healthy body weight

Added pounds can cause added strain on your back.

  • Keep your back strong
  • Improve your flexibility

Did you know that having flexible hamstrings can often reduce your lower back discomfort?

  • Participate in a regular exercise program

Be sure and seek approval from your physician before starting any exercise program!

What causes back pain?

While back pain can sometimes occur from a single incident such as car accident or a fall, most back pain occurs as a result of:

  1. Poor posture
  2. Poor physical health
  3. Poor body mechanics
  4. Repetitive strain

These factors can cause wear and tear on your back and may eventually lead to pain and disability.