Spondylolisthesis occurs when one of the spinal vertebrae slips out of place. It is a spinal condition that is frequently caused by genetics, wear-and-tear, and overextension of the spine, resulting in pressure placed on the nerves at the affected area, which leads to pain.
However, there are instances that the individual might not be aware that they are suffering from spondylolisthesis. This is because it often happens without any prior symptoms. The typical symptoms that come with the condition are:
- Weakness, tingling, or numbness around the foot
- Tight hamstrings
- Pain when bending over
- Difficulty standing or walking for an extended period
- Pain in the legs and buttocks
- Lower back stiffness or tightness
- Lower back pain
In order to diagnose this condition, an x-ray is usually administered. After-care treatments often involve physical therapy to strengthen back and abdominal muscles, steroid injections, bracing, anti-inflammatory medications, or bracing. For severe cases, the individual might even have to go through a surgical process.
Even with all these treatment processes, it is crucial to ensure that you are sitting correctly. If you are suffering from spondylolisthesis, here are some ways how you can and should sit!
1. Adopt a neutral spine sitting posture
One thing you have to take note of when you sit with spondylolisthesis intentionally is to, as much as possible, maintain a neutral spine sitting posture. Doing so will take off as much unnecessary pressure off your lower back to prevent further agitation. When you adopt a neutral spine sitting posture, you should feel a slight inward bend at the lower back. That is your lumbar region.
2. Adjust your posture throughout the day
There are many variations of neutral spine postures, and we highly recommend you cycle through them throughout your day. This is particularly crucial for individuals with back issues and not just limited to spondylolisthesis. From sitting to standing, switching your postures throughout the day provides rest for different muscles and joints while encouraging blood flow. Some healthy neutral spine postures you can cycle through are:
- Declined sitting: You can do so by using a kneeling chair, which typically angles downwards at around 20 degrees to allow your knees to be below hip level, enabling you to sit in a neutral spine posture effortlessly.
- Reclined sitting: Lean back at about 100 to 110 degrees with your back flat on the backrest.
- Standing: Standing every 15 minutes or so helps to reduce lower back pain by up to 54 per cent while allowing you to adopt a neutral spine posture naturally.
3. Get up and move around
Low-impact exercises, such as walking and standing that do not involve overextending and twisting of the back are ideal for those with spondylolisthesis as they can help to ease some of the pressure on the affected vertebrae. Additionally, you may also consider specific stretching exercises, such as:
- Knee to chest stretch or lift
- Hamstring stretch
- Pelvic tilt
4. Invest in a sit-stand desk and ergonomic chair
First of all, adjustable study tables or work desks allows you to easily adjust your posture throughout the day, switching from sitting to standing whenever you want to. Secondly, investing in an ergonomic chair supports your back ideally, helping you to maintain a neutral spine posture much more effectively. With features such as adjustable lumbar support, tilt control, adjustable armrests, and more, ergonomic chairs and tables are ideal for helping those with spondylolisthesis sit comfortably, correctly, and pain-free!
There are more people than you know who live with spondylolisthesis. While it may be painful, the condition is entirely manageable without the need for surgery. At the end of the day, it is about treating your body appropriately and taking vital care when you sit during work or study.
Looking for an ergonomic solution to end your back aches and pain? Look no further than TakeAseat.sg. We have tons of ergonomic furniture and accessories that enables you to adopt a healthy working posture, from using the keyboard to sitting in front of your monitor. Find out more at https://www.takeaseat.sg/ to get started on your ergonomic journey today!