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Image of older women holding her back in pain.

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Back pain. In the last 3 months, about 1 in 4 adults has had at least one day of back pain, mostly in the lower back, according to NIH in Health.


The good news is that most back pain goes away by itself—in time. If pain continues for more than 3 months, you have chronic back pain. If doctors can find out the source of your pain, you may be treated effectively with certain surgeries.


But even chronic pain can clear up without surgery. Don’t let the pain take over. Doctors advise:

•  Stay active and maintain a healthy weight.

•  Stretch before exercise or other strenuous physical activity.

•  Don’t slouch when standing or sitting.

•  Make sure your work surface is at a comfortable height for you.

•  Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes.

•  Lift, if you must, with your back straight, bend at the knees, and put the stress on your legs and hips.

•  Don’t smoke.

•  Talk with your doctor to make sure you’re getting enough calcium and vitamin D.

This website is not meant to substitute for expert medical advice or treatment. Follow your doctor’s or health care provider’s advice if it differs from what is given in this guide.


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