Back pain whilst sitting: Is your wallet the problem?

Sitting is one of the most stressful activities we put our spine through. Sitting for long periods of time can be a major cause of back pain, increasing stress on the back, neck, arms and legs, spinal muscles and intervertebral discs.

Poor posture whilst sat down is a common issue- contributing to pain and problems. We often see people getting in and out of cars or sat in clinic with wallets in their back pocket. This is an oft-overlooked cause of low back pain.
If you’re sat on a pile of cash, cards and coins, this can stress your hip joint and lower back. The problem sciatic nerve sciatica chiropractic treatment for sciatica chiropractor for sciatica sciatic pain sciatica injury nerve pain chiropractor near me Emsworth Hampshire Chichester Back pain Neck pain Headachecan also affect the sciatic nerve, which is right behind your hip joint. The wallet puts pressure over the piriformis muscle which in turn irritates the sciatic nerve between the wallet and the hip itself. The pain can start in your hip and radiate all the way down your leg.
Sitting with a wallet in your back pocket tilts your pelvis to one side, putting additional stress on your spine. Consequently, instead of sitting upright, you round your lower back. The bigger your wallet, the more lopsided you’re going to sit.

Sitting upright without any additional weight on you will place 140 kg of pressure on the lumbar discs. Leaning forward from this position then raises the pressure to 185 kg. Sitting with one hip elevated creates an imbalance in your spine. This puts stress on the lumbar discs near your sciatic nerve roots. Transmitting forces unevenly through the spine can cause pain and muscle imbalance.

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Image source: bodycarechiro.com.au

Don’t be tempted to move the wallet into your front pocket either- creates pinching and discomort between the thigh and abdomen!

The best suggestion: Take your wallet out of your pocket when you’re sat down and store it somewhere safe instead.

Alternatively, consider investing in a slim wallet that carries only the essentials. You may also find a money clip useful instead of using a heavy wallet.

If sciatica and back pain continues to trouble you, please call the clinic on 01243 379693 to book your appointment or book online here. Speak to your chiropractor about exercises you can do to help reduce sciatic symptoms.

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