Making Back Pain Worse Instead Of Better
Here are some common ways people increase their back pain, instead of making it better:
- Lack of physical activity
- Improperly bending or poor back mechanics
- Improper use of icing and heating back muscles
- Sitting on fitness ball rather then your office chair
When you are experiencing chronic back pain, it is common to significantly reduce physical activity. While this is a good idea in some cases, in reality its best to keep some level of physical activity going. Lying in bed for days or weeks can delay healing. Resting longer than 48 hours causes muscle atrophy, which can often lead to a muscle spasm and increased weakening of the back muscles. Light activity like walking, swimming, or spending some time on an elliptical trainer can actually speed up the healing process.
Its important when bending or lifting heavy objects to bend at the knees rather then using the support of your back muscles. Improper bending increases the likelihood of injuring your back through something as simple as a sneeze. In time, over-usage of the back muscles causes significant weakening so that when you least expect it a sudden injury occurs.
In the case of icing and heating back muscles its important to note that although a hot shower might feel good, the heat might actually be increasing inflammation by opening up blood vessels. Icing and heating in combination breaks the cycles in which muscle spasms cause pain.
Pros On A Far Infrared Heating Pad:
I have had numerous back problems & a real problem with Chronic Inflammation in my back. You can read my story on my, About Me, page. Because of my fir heating pad, I no longer take an anti-inflammatory. Therefore, I no longer have to put up with side effects from pharmaceuticals.
Infrared has done wonders for my back. Whenever I lift something wrong or do something that puts my back out, this is the first thing I reach for
For me, it works best if I use it about 3 times a day for a half hour each time. Youll have to experiment for yourself. Everyone is different. Some people lay on their far infrared pad while watching t.v. Theres no danger in how long you use it. Make sure you let it heat up for about 10 minutes first. It doesnt automatically jump to the heat setting you set it at.
Can I Use Ice Therapy
Ice therapy doesnt have many of the limitations of heat therapy. For example, its not typically as dangerous to people with other health issues. However, it can be a problem for people who have sensory issues that make it difficult to sense pain. This includes people who have diabetes, as nerve damage may have impacted their sensitivity to extreme temperatures. Its important to be able to see and feel what the ice is doing, so you dont accidentally let it sit on your skin too long to cause damage and, ultimately, more pain. Its also not recommended for people who have poor circulation.
As we mentioned previously, its important to understand the source of your pain and which treatment is going to be the most effective. Ice therapy is not useful for individuals who are trying to treat stiff joints or muscles because it will not loosen up stiff areas it will have the opposite effect!
Don’t Miss: How Should I Sleep For Lower Back Pain
Best 4 Heating Pad & Pack For Hip Pain Offer In 2021 Reviews
Are you looking for a high-quality heating pad for hip pain available on the market?
Then you are in the right place!
In this review, you can find out everything you need to know about the 4 best heating pads for hip pain. These heating pad models are durable and high-quality and offer quick pain relief. Read all about their design and technical specifications and decide which is the best one for you.
How Does Ice Work
First, we need to understand how each of these treatment modalities work. Lets begin with ice.
Ice has long been thought of as natures natural pain killer. It has powerful effects on the human body when applied to the skin, some of which we have only recently begun to understand.
Ice has been used for many years as a form of pain relief, and there are accounts of ice being used to treat injuries in the earliest days of mankind.
Ice works through a couple of mechanisms:
- Ice, when applied to the skin, produces an effect called vasoconstriction in the blood vessels which basically means the small vessels narrow and shut down blood flow to that area. Thats one of the reasons ice is so useful for swelling, such as after an ankle sprain.
- Ice also has an effect on the nerves around the area, dampening their signals which means we feel naturally less pain with an injury.
- Ice also encourages a flushing out of the potentially harmful chemicals around an injury site and reduces inflammation.
You May Like: What Kind Of Doctor Specializes In Back Pain
Flaws But Not Dealbreakers
The PureReliefs cover requires gentler washing than others we tested: washing on the delicate cycle with cold water and drying on the delicates cycle rather than the medium setting most pads can tolerate. While its plug stays firmly connected to the base of the pad, its locking tabs could be tough to disengage for people with large hands or pain in their fingers.
One of our long-term testers found that the PureRelief can have problems maintaining temperatures for long periods of time. In their experience, after about 30 minutes of use, the PureRelief tends to cool down, requiring them to increase the number in order to start the heat again.
What Causes Constipation Problems
The leading causes of constipation are poor diet, too much time spent sitting down, and lack of exercise. Almost all of us have experienced constipation at one point in time, and we know that it is extremely annoying it is. There are even other people who develop a fever because of this problem.
So, why are you constipated? Here are some reasons:
Read Also: What Are The Best Yoga Poses For Back Pain
When To Use Ice For Back Pain
Youll want to apply ice during the acute phase, or inflammatory phase, of a back injury . Generally speaking, the inflammatory phase is the first 72 hours following an injury.
If you suffer an acute injury, your body responds in the following ways: Increased inflammation. Increased blood flow to the area. Increased swelling.
Guidelines for applying ice therapy: 20 minutes at a time, followed by a 40 to 60 minute break.
* Note: If you ice for longer period of time, youll actually have a negative response. Your body does the opposite of what youre trying to do. This means that instead of constricting blood flow to decrease inflammation to the area, your body will dilate blood vessels, which will increase blood flow to the area, thereby increasing inflammation and pain.
During the first 72 hours, you can use ice multiple times during the day .
Never apply ice directly to skin always use a barrier between your skin and ice such as a thin towel or shirt to prevent frostbite.
Ways to apply ice therapy to an injured area at home include: Ice packs.
Sensations you will feel from icing include: Cold Burning Aching Numbing .
Thermotex Platinum Far Infrared Heating Pad All Purpose
Thermotex offers several varieties of infrared heating pads, including the Platinum Far Infrared Heating Pad. The company states that this product will penetrate up to 2.36 inches into the affected area within 20 minutes. The pad contains three 3 x 8-in inserts to provide heat.
The company claims it can help benefit pain in several body areas, including the back, shoulders, neck, and hips. Thermotex provides instructional videos to show people how to use the heating pad on different parts of the body.
Don’t Miss: What Are The Causes Of Lower Back And Hip Pain
Types Of Heating Pads For Arthritic Pain
Heating pads come in all sorts of styles shapes and sizes. Depending on the body part, you can buy a heat pad suitable to treat that one particular area. Below you can find links to some of the best heating pads to treat various ares of the body.
- Neck & Shoulder Infrared Heating Devices Good for people with Cervical osteoarthritis also known as neck arthritis.
- Moist Heat Therapy Pads These heat pads and wraps offer a better solution than traditional heat pads as they can provide steam as a treatment. This will also limit that chances of the pad burning the skin.
- Microwaveable pads Not everyone prefers an electric heating pad. Sometimes its easier to throw a quality heat pad into the microwave and get short bursts of pain relief.
When To Use Caution
Paraffin wax treatments supply moist heat but overheating can cause burns.
Wonder if its safe to use ice when youre burning up with fever? Theres nothing wrong with using cold to bring down a fever, says Dr. Kriegler.
Recommended Reading: What Does Lower Left Back Pain Mean
Neck Pain From Sleeping Is Manageable
Neck pain from sleeping can be your worst nightmare in the morning. This can be caused by sleeping on your stomach, sleeping with your hand placed on the forehead, or having pillow problems like stiff or thick pillows cramping your comfort level during sleep.
Luckily, sleep posture matters. Try sleeping on your back or side, or sleep without a pillow. Sleeping without a pillow is known to benefit the neck, spine, and face. At the same time, it might also improve the quality of your sleep.
Other ways to relieve neck pain include neck exercises, showers or baths, applying heat or cold, acupuncture, massage therapy, chiropractic care, and an anti-inflammatory diet.
Also Read :
Recommended Reading: How To Treat Leg Pain Caused By Sciatica
Waiting More Than A Week Without Seeing A Doctor
Many people suffer and wait, thinking their pain will go away on its own. But pain that persists tends to get worse, not better, if you neglect it.
INSTEAD If you have any kind of consistent pain or issue that doesnt go away, get a diagnosis and treatment plan from a healthcare professional. Make sure nothing more serious is going on. Give yourself the gift of days without pain.
Recommended Reading: How To Treat Sciatica Lower Back Pain
Is Ice Or Heat Better For Back Pain
Back pain is a prevalent experience for most people at some point in their adult lives. Applying heat or ice is one of the tried-and-true methods of at-home treatment for back pain, but how do you know which method to use and when? Get to know how to use ice or heat for back pain and when to use both.
When To Use Heat Vs When To Use Ice For Lower Back Pain
Both heat and cold therapy are beneficial and can provide effective relief from lower back pain. If you are like many people, though, you might not know when to use heat vs. when to use ice for lower back pain to achieve the maximum benefit. If you are suffering from lower back pain, read on to discover whether you should be using heat or ice.
Don’t Miss: Can A Chiropractor Fix Lower Back Pain
Work With An Experienced Back Pain Specialist Today
Sciatica can produce symptoms like intense pain and numbness in the legs and lower back, which directly affect your ability to move freely. Patients that experience these signs understand the importance of finding treatments that help them control the pain in a safe and effective way.
If you want to find out more about the different sciatica treatment options available in North Seattle and surrounding areas, contact us today and our team will be glad to help.
Ice Or Heat For Back Pain
30-Second Blog Snapshot:
- Conservative therapies, such as hot or cold packs, exercising, and over-the-counter pain relievers may help mitigate pain in between interventional pain treatments.
- Patients hoping to relieve low back pain with a heat or ice pack may be confused about which one to use for their pain.
- At Southwest Spine and Pain Center, Utahs leading pain management group, physicians explain the difference between ice and heat packs for back pain.
Although ice and heat can be beneficial at relieving certain musculoskeletal pains, there are instances where one should be used over the other. A great rule of thumb to follow may be this: ice is for injuries heat is for muscle pain. Well elaborate:
Ice Is For Injuries
When you sustain any injury of any kind, your body responds by inflaming or swelling its tissues to prevent infectious agents and other debris from impeding recovery. Although this inflammatory process is completely normal, it can be incredibly painful depending on the cause or condition of your injury. Therefore, its important to apply ice to your injury not just to calm swelling, but to also reduce pain. Nevertheless, there are certain situations ice should be avoided and that is when your muscles are sore or stressed. Ice can cause severe trigger points and spasms to develop when its applied to sore muscles, which leads us to our next point: heat is for muscle pain.
Heat Is For Muscle Pain
Don’t Miss: How To Treat Back Pain
When Ice Therapy Is Not The Answer
As with heat therapy, there are times when it can be tempting to slap a bag of ice on any sore or twitching muscle. But doing ice therapy for back spasm and a number of other problems can actually do more harm than good.
You should not ice for:
- General muscle pains
- Trigger points
- Reducing body fat
Also, this is pretty intuitive, but you should not apply ice if youre already shivering.
Another word to the wiseyou may think you have pulled or strained a muscle in the back or neck, but actual tissue damage is quite rare. The tissue of the back is really thick and it takes a lot of forcelike whiplash from a car accident or lifting something very heavyto actually tear muscles.
So when it comes to answering the questionwhats good for back pain, heat or cold?heat usually wins out.
And if you indeed have a back strain from lifting or something else, you should only apply ice for a few days and then switch to heating pads.
What Are The Benefits Of A Heating Pad For Back Pain
One of the common ways people treat back pain is the use of a heating pad, which is applied to the area of the back experiencing pain. This pad is usually powered by a plug that connects to a wall outlet, and it provides varying degrees of warmth depending on the person’s needs. Using a heating pad for back pain stimulates blood flow to the affected area, promoting healing. It also has a tendency to dull the pain, providing temporary relief to the user. A heating pad for back pain is also useful because it is an inexpensive way to treat the pain and get quick relief.
Using a heating pad for back pain is easy and can be done at home with little trouble. The person using the heating pad will need to ensure he or she is sitting in a supportive chair that will prevent undue strain on other muscles. The heating pad will need to be positioned properly behind the back, and the user can apply the heat for several minutes at a time to get back pain relief. Using the heating pad for back pain is effective because the heat transferred to the muscles will help stretch the muscles and release any excess strain causing the muscles to tighten.
Don’t Miss: What Causes A Tight Lower Back
Are Heating Pads Good For Back Pain
Studies show that heating pads can help a person find relief for chronic back pain. In an , researchers found that moist heat was more efficient than dry heat, but both alleviated pain.
Some companies sell moist heating pads. People should never attempt to moisten a heating pad unless the manufacturer states it is safe to do so.
Ice Therapy As An Alternative Treatment To Bulging Disc
Cryotherapy or most commonly known as an ice therapy is also an appropriate treatment when at home. It helps in treating inflammation and other injuries related to soft tissue. Swellings and inflammatory areas are best treated with ice packs or the cold gel packs. It should be placed around the compressed spine nerve, the actual source of discomfort. Just like heat therapy, ice therapy One of the most effective methods of relieving pain instantly is melted ice water on a wet towel.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Relief From Upper Back Pain
Best Practices: How To Ice Your Back