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  Do's and Don'ts  
  Here are some key points that we recommend to help keep your spine, back and overall body functioning properly.  
 

STANDING

DO

- If you stand a lot, use a foot stool or a step on which to rest one foot. This takes the strain off the lower back.
- If you cannot use a foot stool, stand squarely, balanced equally on both feet.
- Try to hold your head in the neutral position looking straight ahead.
- Those vertically challenged should of course wear a shorter heel.

DON'T

- Don't stand in one place for too long.
- Don't bend forward with straight legs.
- Avoid wearing high heels. The higher the heel, the greater the postural stress.

SITTING

DO

- Place both feet flat on the floor.
- Sit back on the chair. It is imperative that you give your back proper support.
- Adjust your chair so your knee is slightly higher than your hip. If your chair is not adjustable you will need a footrest.
- Your keyboard should be just under your hands when they are stretched straight out from your elbow.

DON'T

- Don't sit in a chair that is too large, too high or too low.
- Avoid leaning forward with your back arched.
- Don't slouch.
- Prolonged sitting produces postural strain.

DRIVING

DO

- Move your seat forward until your thighs rest comfortably on the seat and your feet are on the pedals.
- Elevate the headrest until it is right behind the back of your head. This is important in case of accident.
- Sit straight with your back against the seat back. Some cars have built-in lumbar supports. If the seat is less than adequate, your chiropractor can recommend a lumbar support.
- Remember to keep both hands on the wheel.

DON'T

- Don't sit too far back. Reaching for the pedals or steering wheel strains the back. Stretching out the arms tires the upper back.

SLEEPING

DO

- The more supportive the mattress the better. This does mean firm but does not mean hard. Placing a sheet of plywood underneath the mattress firms up the bed without making it harder. If your bed is too hard, use a two inch foam mattress topper.
- Sleep in the fetal position on your side. Put a pillow between your knees to take the pressure off your lower back.
- If you sleep on your back, place a pillow underneath your knees. A good cervical pillow is also recommended for under your neck to help maintain the normal cervical curvature. Ask your chiropractor about cervical pillows. The best way to rise from bed is to turn on your side and then sit up sideways, using your arms to help you.

DON'T

- Don't sleep on anything that provides little or no support.
Sleeping on your stomach produces significant strain on the lower back.

LIFTING

DO

- To lift, squat down keeping, your back straight.
- Grasp the object firmly keeping it as close to your body as possible.
- Lift using your legs while keeping your back straight.
- Move slowly, carefully and smoothly.
- Once holding a heavy object, keep your shoulders and hips facing the same direction.
- If your job requires a lot of lifting, use a lumbosacral support belt to help protect your lower back. Talk to your chiropractor about lumbar back supports.

DON'T

- Never lift an object that is too heavy or awkward, get help.
- Don't bend over or twist while lifting.
- Avoid lifting higher than your shoulder.
- Don't lift with arms out-stretched.

 


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