If you’re like many people, then you know that tobacco use increases your risk of stroke, lung disease, and cancer. However, you may be surprised to hear that smoking can damage your spine. If you smoke cigarettes and suffer from back pain in Miami, then keep reading to learn about the connection between these 2 factors.
Smoking can decrease blood flow and healing.
Smoking impairs your body’s blood flow. When blood flow is decreased, your body’s tissues may not get the amount of oxygen and nutrients that they need. Because of this, impaired blood flow caused by smoking can prevent your spine from remaining strong and healthy. Also, research has shown that when it comes to recovering from surgery, the process takes significantly longer for people who smoke than for non-smokers. When your body struggles to repair and heal, then back pain may be more likely.
Smoking can lead to less muscle mass.
Cigarette smoking can have a degenerative effect on your muscles, and tobacco smoke can damage your lungs and make physical activity more difficult. This effect causes many smokers to be less active, which can result in less muscle mass. When your muscles are damaged and weak, they can struggle to provide your spine with the support that it needs and contribute to the development of back pain.
Smoking can affect many parts of the spine.
There are several reasons why your back doctor will advise you to quit cigarette smoking because every part of your spine suffers the effects of this unhealthy habit. For example, because smoking reduces bone density, the vertebrae are at a greater risk for spinal arthritis, facet disease, and osteoporosis. Also, the discs in between the vertebrae, which provide cushioning and flexibility, can become brittle and weak due to the decreased blood supply. Furthermore, because nicotine reduces collagen levels, cartilage and connective tissues become less resilient and more prone to injury. Weakened intervertebral discs, cartilage, and vertebrae can increase your risk of herniated discs and back pain, making quitting smoking a smart idea for individuals who want to improve their spine health.