Watch your posture at all times. Stand tall, sleep tall, and THINK TALL!
Avoid rubbing, probing, or “poking” in the areas your doctor adjusts.
Avoid sudden twists or turns of movement beyond normal limits of motion, especially of the neck.
Avoid extreme bending of your spine in any direction; avoid stretching, reaching, or other overhead work. Ex. Be careful while shampooing hair.
Avoid bending or stooping sharply to pick up objects; rather, bend your knees to minimize the strain on your lower back.
When lifting, keep your back straight; bend your knees and let your legs bear the strain. Hold objects close to your body when lifting, if possible.
When bathing, sit rather than recline in the tub. Lying back in the tub may cause the vertebrae to slip out of its normal position. If you are tired and wish to relax, it’s better to lie in bed.
When your doctor recommends exercises to strengthen your body, avoid jarring activities which place stress on your neck and spine.
Rest, Relaxation, and Sleep
Set aside a special time each day for complete mental and physical relaxation. This is important for restoration and maintenance of health.
When sitting, choose a chair that has adequate firmness to hold your weight comfortably, and then sit straight. Avoid too soft, overstuffed chairs. Recliners are okay if they are constructed so that when you are reclined, your back is in a normal, straight position.
Cross your legs only at the ankles, not at the knees. Crossing your legs at the knees could aggravate your back condition as well as interfere with circulation to the lower limbs.
Be sure to get plenty of sleep. 75% of your healing occurs during sleep.
Sleep on a firm mattress, preferably one which is neither too hard nor too soft, but just firm enough to hold your body level but soft enough to allow your shoulders and buttocks to depress into the mattress.
Your pillow should be neither too high or too low. The pillow should support your head so that your neck vertebrae stay level with your spine. Never sleep on two pillows or with your head on the couch’s armrest.
Sleep on your back or your side with your legs flexed slightly. Never sleep on your stomach. Raise your head off the pillow when changing positions.
Rise from your bed by turning on your side and swinging your legs off the bed, then push yourself into a sitting position with your arms, thus minimizing the amount of strain on your back.
Do not read or watch T.V. in bed, particularly with your head propped at a sharp or strained angle.
Do not sleep while sitting in a chair or in cramped quarters. Lie down in bed when it is time to sleep.