Chronic pain caused by lifestyle.

Posted on by Dr.Mike

y Foot Levelers on Monday, September 24, 2012 at 8:15am.

Pain is not always the result of a particular injury that has occurred during your life. In fact, we could be causing our own chronic pain every day and not realize it.

As defined by the American Chronic Pain Association, chronic pain “…can be described as ongoing or recurrent pain, lasting beyond the usual course of acute illness or injury or more than 3 to 6 months, and which adversely affects the individual’s well-being. A simpler definition for chronic or persistent pain is pain that continues when it should not.”[1] Certain choices we make in our everyday lives could be the reason why we experience lasting musculoskeletal pain. Below are a few common causes of pain:

Carrying Wallets/Handbags/Briefcases

Instead of stuffing our pockets, we use these to carry our essentials. But carrying a handbag or briefcase causes us to adjust to the amount of weight being carried on one side. This can strain the lower back and hips, as one shoulder will shift weight to one side of the body. A wallet is another culprit for causing chronic pain. Sitting on a thick wallet in the car, at work, and at home causes one side of the body to be elevated, creating an uneven foundation for the hips and lower back. Sitting on a wallet, the greater the chance of experiencing a pinched nerve, or a herniated disc.


Extra weight can impact the body in multiple ways. Added weight around the midsection of the body will offset balance, causing the pelvis to tilt forward, which can strain the spine and lower back. Additional weight upon the feet also causes the muscles, ligaments, and tendons to stretch and become weaker. It is common for overweight men and women to experience collapsed arches, which cause the knees to rotate and disrupt the kinetic chain. Pain becomes an issue when the body begins to carry more weight that it has been designed to carry. Simply adding light exercise and cutting back a few calories during the week can make a big difference.

On the Job

Every job is different and our bodies react inversely to the ergonomics at work. Whether you are standing or sitting all day, our bodies develop a routine and adapt to the positions we frequent the most throughout the day. No matter what the job may be, every body needs restoration of its original range of motion. This can be done by going for a walk in the parking lot on a break or stretching.
The bottom line is, take frequent but short breaks to avoid improper posture, lifting techniques, and eyestrain from computer screens. It can also help as a quick energy boost.


Everyone has a pattern of their own – some people need a firm mattress while others need a soft one. But, there are drawbacks to certain ways that we sleep. Stomach and side sleeping may feel comfortable, but are also a main reason why we toss and turn during the night and wake up with pain. As we sleep, our head, neck, and spine need to be supported correctly. Optimal sleep patterns include, sleeping flat on the back with the neck supported by a cervical pillow.
These are just a few of many reasons why we have chronic pain from seemingly harmless origins. At least one of the factors above affects your everyday lives.
Instead of using temporary painkillers to treat lasting discomfort, talk to your chiropractor – your DC will be able to pinpoint pain, and take steps to treat it at the source.

[1] American Chronic Pain Association. Chronic Pain. Last Updated: 9/18/2012.


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