Back pain is a common problem among adults. While this pain may be caused by very strenuous activity such as lifting heavy objects or prolonged physical exercise, it could also occur without any obvious physical strain. Experts in the field of physical therapy say that any type of back pain or injury must be addressed immediately. This will prevent the development of chronic back ache that could require extended medication or even surgery.
Here are some of the most effective ways to relieve back pain:
1. Keep Exercising Your Body
Regular activity is the best remedy for back pain. So limit your bed rest to a maximum of three hours during the day. Do simple exercises like taking a 30-minute walk in the morning or evening. Walking is important because it helps you to put your body in an upright position, which is essential for a healthy spine. Just remember to abstain from very strenuous activities like gardening or any type of motion that causes a lot of pain.
2. Improve Your Posture
Many people have back pain because of poor posture. Before the event that led to the first occurence of sharp pain in your back, you may have been putting strain on your back every day through bad posture. These strains add up and put severe pressure on your back. For instance, you can place a lot of pressure on your spine just by leaning over the sink while brushing your teeth early in the morning. When you keep your back straight, you will reduce the pressure on the nerves of your spine and cut off back pain.
3. Visit a Physical Therapist
To manage chronic back pain, you need to see a specialist who can develop a unique exercise plan that will fit your lifestyle. Physical therapists know that there is no “one-size-fits-all” type of pill that can cure everyones lower back pain. For instance, for some patients, an inversion table is the answer to their quest to relieve back pain. Over three million people all over the world have enjoyed relief from spinal stenosis, muscle tension, degenerative disc disease and muscle spasms through the use of this class 1 medical equipment.
4. Apply Ice or Heat
Ice will reduce inflammation at your back if you apply it within 48 hours after you have an injury. Some people apply heat immediately, but this can lead to greater inflammation within the first 24 hours. But after 48 hours, you may switch from ice to heat. When you apply ice or heat, you should take it off after 20 minutes to rest the skin and prevent frost bites or burnt skin.
5. Adjust Your Sleeping Position
It is important to keep your spine in the right position while you sleep at night. Sleeping in the wrong position, or using a mattress that provides inadequate support will cause more pain. While you sleep, put pillows under your knees. If you sleep on your side, place pillows between your knees. Avoid sleeping on your stomach because it twists your head and neck and places more stress on your back.
6. Build a Strong Core
Your core is a term used to describe the six main abdominal muscles. You can relieve back pain faster if you develop stronger abdominal muscles. These muscles are among the most important muscle groups in the middle section of your body. If your abdominals are not strong, other muscles will have to work harder to make up for this weakness. As soon as you strengthen your abdominal muscles, you will reduce the strain on your lower back.
7. Stretch Your Body
Sitting at your desk all day can increase your back pain. Instead, get up at 20 minutes intervals and stretch your entire body. If you spend several hours bending forward to do your job, you will need to get up and stretch your body backward. Stretch your legs as well anytime you stand up. You may also adopt a more consistent stretching routine by doing yoga.
8. Redesign Your Workspace
Change the design of your workspace so you won’t have to bend forward to see what is on your laptop or desktop monitor. Place your mouse within easy reach. Change your chair to an adjustable one that will provide enough support for your back and allow you to keep your feet on the floor. In addition to relieving back pain, it will also help to reduce eye strain.
9. Use Pain Relievers
Some off-the-counter drugs can help to reduce back pain. Examples include anti-inflammatory drugs like ibuprofen, aspirin and naproxen sodium. You may also take drugs like panadol to manage your back pain. Before taking any pain medication, make sure you consult your physician or pharmacist and let them know about any other drugs you are currently taking. This will help to prevent adverse drug interactions.
10. Reduce the Use of Braces
When you are having recurring back pain, you may want to pamper your back muscles. But physical therapy experts say that you should limit your use of braces. While braces may be useful when you need to do strenuous activities such as lifting of heavy objects, you only need to keep them on for less than 20 minutes at once. If you put on braces throughout the day, the muscles that should give you stability will get weak and you will not have enough strength in your core.
11. Quit Smoking
Studies have shown that smoking increases your risk of having osteoporosis and other bone-related problems. If you have osteoporosis in your spine, it may cause compression fractures. So if you want to reduce your lower back pain, quit smoking. You may need to see a therapist that can recommend a rehabilitation program that will help you to stay off smoking permanently.
Those are some of the most effective ways to manage, and relieve back pain. Before you start any new exercise routine, make sure you see a physical therapist. Remember to call your doctor immediately if you discover that your back pain is very severe or you have difficulty walking or standing up.