Perhaps you bent awkwardly for long periods while lifting heavy objects. Or you sat in a hunched position without any break. Whatever the cause, whether it’s overstretching, arthritis or overusing the muscles, once you suffer from lower back pain, it can be extremely difficult to shake. Almost every person experiences a sudden bout of back pain at one time in their lives. If you are experiencing your first ever excruciating back pain, here are some simple methods to ease the pain that you can try at home.
Heat And Cold Therapy
Researchers have proven that the application of continuous heat can ease an acute backache more effectively than the use of drugs such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen. Applying dry heat from lamps or heating pads or moist heat from washcloths to the body parts can reduce pain markedly. Cold therapy can also lessen swelling and inflammation in the back. While cold compresses numb the pain, ice shouldn’t be used for long periods as it can result in stiffness. Usually, doctors suggest the use of cold compresses in the initial 24 hours to control the pain. Don’t apply cold packs for too long, as that can damage the skin, but instead wrap the cold pack in a towel before applying it to your back.
The key to a perfectly healthy back is moving around as you usually would. Take the dog for a walk, go to work, and even make the beds. Once you feel that your back is getting better, you can indulge in aerobic workouts such as bicycling, jogging, and swimming. These exercises keep your overall body fit, and your back extremely strong. However, you shouldn’t overdo, especially when your back is hurting. When your back is sore, don’t think of running a marathon. Just move as much as your body allows.
Yoga brings down stress levels and improves blood circulation in the body to promote recovery of your back. Researchers believe that yoga relaxes the lower back more quickly than conventional exercises. Yoga promotes better stretching and relaxation as well as strength. It also suppresses emotional as well as structural activators of lower back pain. If you’ve been suffering from back pain for a long time, join a yoga class at a nearby gym or a local studio. Inform your instructor about the pain so she can focus on exercises that ease back pain.
A Good Night’s Sleep
Those suffering from back pain may not be able to sleep properly. Sleep disturbances are a common occurrence among sufferers of back pain. Peaceful slumber eases back pain because it puts the contracted muscles in a recovery mode and soothes the inflamed joints. For a relaxed sleep, clean your bed, and try sleeping in different positions. Take the strain off your back by sleeping on your sides. Place a soft pillow between your legs, and push the legs slightly towards the chest. If you wish to sleep on your back, keep a pillow or cushion under your knees to maintain the normal curve of your back, and place a pillow under your head. If you prefer sleeping on your stomach, place a pillow below your pelvis to maintain the correct posture. However, you sleep, keep the curvature of the back natural to prevent worsening of your back pain.
Ditch Crunches Or Sit-ups
Crunches are known to cause a lot of pain in the back. While it is true that a strong core is needed to protect the back, crunches do not have any impact on the abdominal muscles that stabilize the back. Instead, crunches create an imbalance because of the excessive compression involved, which causes further pain. Try doing crunches slowly if you don’t want to give them up.
Maintain A Healthy Weight
A healthy back is one of the numerous benefits of reducing weight and remaining in shape. Excess weight can add pressure to the back while standing or moving. While medication for back pain doesn’t always provide immediate relief, losing a few pounds can help take away the pain. If you’re medically obese and have been wrestling back pain for a long time, consider working with a personal trainer who can help you attain your desired size and shape.
Say No To Heels
Take a good look at your shoes when you are experiencing back pain. High heels and sometimes even flip flops can put undue pressure on the back, forcing it to arch a bit more than usual and making the spinal muscles do extra work. Even backless shoes such as sandals distribute body weight unevenly, as they make the feet move side to side. You don’t have to forgo your love for high heels completely – just don’t cover long distances in them, and add cushioning inserts in any uncomfortable shoes. This should significantly relieve back pain within a few months.
Over-The-Counter Pain Relievers
Anti-inflammatory drugs can provide immediate backache relief. If you are taking any other medications, discuss them with your doctor. People with a medical history of other diseases or problems may be advised to avoid some medications.
Acupuncture is a non-traditional method for treatment of chronic lower back pain. This process involves the insertion of thin metallic needles in the acupoints strategically to relieve pain. Acupuncture stimulates the nervous system and provides relaxation to the sufferer. After insertion, the pins are sometimes electrically charged. In order to get maximum benefits from this treatment, get in touch with a reputed acupuncturist who is licensed by the state.
Water therapy exercises are highly therapeutic for back pain sufferers. Common approaches include spa therapy, swimming, floating, and gently stretching in a pool. Physical therapists highly recommend aquatic therapy in warm water for the treatment of back pain, as water buoyancy reduces stress on the joints. Aquatic therapy also decreases joint swelling and inflammation apart and improves range of motion, and the heat promotes muscle relaxation and improves circulation. Try directing the jets at the sore points of the body to enjoy a relaxing massage.