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How To Alleviate Back Pain

% Of People Will Experience Back Pain At Some Time But There Are Ways To Find Relief

How To Relieve Back Pain

As people enter middle age, they are more likely to experience bouts of low back pain. In fact, according to the Harvard Special Health Report Men’s Health: Fifty and Forward, back pain affects about four in five Americans at some point in their lives and equally strikes men and women.

Age is often the culprit. Over time, the bones and joints in your lower back begin to change. Your discs tend to wear out and sometimes become fragmented. These structural alterations sometimes cause pain.

Another cause of low back pain, although it occurs less often, is a herniated disc. Sometimes, a disc pushes outside the space between the bones and compresses a nerve at the point where it branches off the spinal cord. When the sciatic nerve that leads into the buttocks and leg is affected, the pain is called sciatica.

Yet, most cases of low back pain stem from strain or sprain due to simple overuse, unaccustomed activity, excessive lifting, or an accident. In most cases the best move is to wait and see if the pain resolves on its own. If the pain does not improve after three to four days, then it’s time to see a doctor.

However, depending on the source of your back pain and its severity, you might try a few home remedies for low back pain to help ease the pain until your back returns to normal. Here are several options to consider:

Complementary therapies. Several types of complementary therapy may be helpful for relief from low back pain. These include:

When To See Your Doctor About Back Pain

You should see your doctor or physiotherapist if you have back pain that is not getting better after a few weeks of trying simple exercises and following the tips for a healthy back.

Although rare, back pain can be a sign of a more serious condition. If you experience any of the following ‘red flag’ symptoms with your back pain then please see a doctor urgently.

‘Red flag’ symptoms see a doctor urgently if you have:
  • numbness in the groin or buttocks
  • loss of bladder or bowel control
  • redness or swelling on your back
  • difficulty walking
  • constant pain, especially at night
  • pain that is getting much worse, or spreading up your spine
  • numbness or pins and needles in both legs
  • feeling unwell with your back pain, such as a fever or significant sweating that wakes you from sleep.

You should also see your doctor or physiotherapist if:

  • your pain is worse in your lower leg than your back and is not easing
  • you have weakness and numbness in one of your legs
  • you have a rash in the same area as your pain.

When To Call Your Doctor

In most cases, mild aches and pains in your back will not need medical intervention. However, there are some situations where it would be a good idea to seek professional advice. If you experience any of the following symptoms, or you have any concerns about the pain, you should contact your midwife or GP.

  • Severe pain, or pain that lasts for more than two weeks.
  • Pain that starts and finishes abruptly.
  • Pins and needles in your fingers or toes
  • Back pain in the second or third trimester, as this could be a sign of an early labour.
  • Any fever, bleeding from your vagina or pain when you wee.
  • Pain in one or more of your sides, under your ribs.

In extreme cases, where you lose feeling in one or both of your legs, your bum, or your genitals, the NHS advises you to call 999 or go to A& E.

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Take Action: Prevent Injuries

Good posture can help prevent back pain.

  • Try not to slouch when standing and sitting
  • Sit up straight with your back against the back of your chair and your feet flat on the floor if possible, keep your knees slightly higher than your hips
  • Stand tall with your head up and shoulders back
  • If you can, switch between standing and sitting so youre not in the same position for too long
  • Find out how to have good posture while sitting at a computer

Should I See A Chiropractor For My Back Pain

7 Ways to Relieve Back Pain Naturally

Spinal manipulation is used by chiropractors and osteopathic physicians to treat low back pain in selected patients. Spinal manipulation applies hand pressure to areas of the low back to relax irritated muscle and lessen the intensity of the pain.

Traction, using pulleys and weights to lengthen and stretch the spine can result in temporary relief. Both techniques will not treat any underlying causes of back pain, but rather offer a temporary relief from lower back pain.

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Stop Your Activity And Find Immediate Rest

This may already make sense, but many of us prefer to keep moving. Some professionals actually recommend that you stay in motion, but if you are the unfortunate one to have a disc or nerve problem, then that is poor advice. You may end up visiting them for that instead.

Dont try to actively work or move until you know the source of the injury.

A very common reaction is to keep moving but MAY be dangerous. Although this might feel helpful, it is important to determine whether your pain is more than just muscular in nature.

Why you should NOT move:

Moving when you have any of these injuries can cause further injury, intensifying the pain.

If you have a history of ANY of these injuries or suspect that your lifestyle may contribute to it , then rest is a better than simply muscling through it with medication.

Lastly with this first tip, you should know that you should also apply this caution to not just your back but also to your hips, knees and neck.

Forcing yourself to move when these areas are injured can be very risky. Make sure that you arent adding to the pain. The wrong movement can set you behind.

Preventing Pain And Injury

Posture. Using correct posture and keeping your spine in alignment are the most important things you can do for your neck and back . The lower back bears most of your weight, so proper alignment of this section can prevent injury to your vertebrae, discs, and other portions of the spine. If you have back or neck pain, you may need to make adjustments to your daily standing, sitting, and sleeping habits and learn proper ways to lift and bend. Your workspace may need to be rearranged to keep your spine from slouching. Because extra pounds can make back pain worse, you should maintain a weight that is appropriate for your height and body frame.

Exercise. Regular exercise is important to prevent back pain and injury. A program of strengthening, stretching and aerobic exercises will improve your overall fitness level. Research has shown that people who are physically fit are more resistant to back injuries and pain, and recover quicker when they do have injuries, than those who are less physically fit .

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Why Does My Back Hurt

Upper back pain usually occurs suddenly and without warning. This type of pain can take time to heal and can be caused by any or a combination of the following:

Poor Lifting Practices Regardless of how much you work out or how strong you are, your back becomes extremely vulnerable to injury when incorrectly lifting any amount of weight.

Solution: Never bend over to lift an object.

Keeping your back straight, bend your knees until you reach the object Get a firm grip on the object and bring it close to your body Raise up using your leg muscles If the object is too large or too heavy causing you to lean forward, get help

The use of a back brace does not prevent injuries from improper lifting, instead, helps you maintain your back in an upright position.

Being Overweight or Obese Your weight plays a significant role in your back health. Carrying just a few extra pounds can put constant stress on your back muscles resulting in poor posture, discomfort, injury, and pain.

Solution: Lose weight in a responsible and structured manner by:

Consulting your primary care physician to determine the ideal weight for your height and body type. With the help of a certified nutritionist, alter your diet and eating habits. Increase your physical activities. Hire a certified personal trainer to guide you through more efficient exercises and set realistic weight loss goals.

Learn more about how to fix poor posture by reading yourfootpalace.com/how-to-make-good-posture-habit/

Avoid Prolonged Static Posture

How to Relieve Lower Back Pain IN SECONDS

It is important to pay attention to the joints and muscles of your spine and hip. Prevent fatigue and stresses on these joints by following simple tips, such as:

  • Avoid excessive sitting or consider using a standing desk while you work. When you sit for a long duration, the pressure on your spinal discs increase. Aim to get up every hour and walk a short distance to take the load off your discs.

When you have a flare-up of symptoms, consider less exertive activities, such as reading a book, listening to music, or crafting. These activities can help divert your mind from the pain and let your back rest at the same time.

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More Advanced Care Options

Surgery When other therapies fail, surgery may be considered to relieve pain caused by worsening nerve damage, serious musculoskeletal injuries, or nerve compression. Specific surgeries are selected for specific conditions/indications. However, surgery is not always successful. It may be months following surgery before the person is fully healed and there may be permanent loss of flexibility. Surgical options include:

Implanted nerve stimulators

  • Spinal cord stimulation uses low-voltage electrical impulses from a small implanted device that is connected to a wire that runs along the spinal cord. The impulses are designed to block pain signals that are normally sent to the brain.
  • Dorsal root ganglion stimulation also involves electrical signals sent along a wire connected to a small device that is implanted into the lower back. It specifically targets the nerve fibers that transmit pain signals. The impulses are designed to replace pain signals with a less painful numbing or tingling sensation.
  • Peripheral nerve stimulation also uses a small implanted device and an electrode to generate and send electrical pulses that create a tingling sensation to provide pain relief.

Treatment Options For Lower Back Pain

If your GP thinks there may be a specific cause for your back pain, they may refer you to a specialist to treat that specific condition.Usually, lower back pain gets better in a few days or weeks and often you can manage it yourself at home. For some advice about when to seek medical help, see our section on Symptoms.

Your physiotherapist or GP will probably encourage you to try self-help measures. They can also advise you on what exercises you can do to help your back. If the pain doesnt improve, then your GP can help with other options or may refer you to a specialist.

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What To Do If You Have Back Pain

Fortunately, most back pain gets better relatively quickly and there are simple things that can be done to recover and reduce the chance of pain returning. It’s important to keep doing your normal work or daily activities, or return to doing these as soon as you can. You can use heat or ice packs, pain relief medication and exercise or massage if these reduce your pain. Read more about treatment options for back pain.

Where Can I Get More Information

6 Yoga Poses and Tips to Alleviate Back Pain â Miosuperhealth

For more information on neurological disorders or research programs funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, contact the Institute’s Brain Resources and Information Network at:

Office of Communications and Public LiaisonNational Institute of Neurological Disorders and StrokeNational Institutes of HealthBethesda, MD 20892

NINDS health-related material is provided for information purposes only and does not necessarily represent endorsement by or an official position of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke or any other Federal agency. Advice on the treatment or care of an individual patient should be obtained through consultation with a physician who has examined that patient or is familiar with that patient’s medical history.

All NINDS-prepared information is in the public domain and may be freely copied. Credit to the NINDS or the NIH is appreciated.

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Ways To Treat Chronic Back Pain Without Surgery

Back pain is considered chronic if it lasts three months or longer. It cancome and go, often bringing temporary relief, followed by frustration.Dealing with chronic back pain can be especially trying if you dont knowthe cause.

Back pain rehabilitationspecialistAndrew Nava, M.D., offers insights into common chronic back pain causes and nonsurgicaltreatment optionsand advises not to give up hope.

Simple Stretches To Relieve Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain can be a debilitating and painful condition.

Fortunately, staying physically active may be the most effective and cost-efficient way to soothe or prevent it.

Here are 8 simple stretches to relieve lower back pain.

3 ).

Although its origin varies, changes in the lumbar, or lower back, structure due to musculoskeletal damage are considered to be the main cause .

Your musculoskeletal system is made up of bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and other connective tissues that provide form, support, stability, and movement to your body.

Other muscles that play an important role in maintaining the normal curvature of your spinal column are reported to be associated with lower back pain. These include the hip flexor and hamstring muscles .

Minor lower back pain normally gets better on its own within a few days or weeks. It can be considered chronic when it persists for more than three months .

In either case, staying physically active and regularly stretching can help reduce lower back pain or prevent it from returning .

The remainder of this article provides eight stretches for lower back pain, all of which you can do in the comfort of your own home with minimal or no equipment.

Summary Lower back pain is an incredibly common condition that can be relieved or prevented with regular exercise and stretching.

The knee-to-chest stretch can help lengthen your lower back, relieving tension and pain.

To perform the knee-to-chest stretch:

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What Are The Risk Factors For Developing Low Back Pain

Anyone can have back pain. Factors that can increase the risk for low back pain include:

Age: The first attack of low back pain typically occurs between the ages of 30 and 50, and back pain becomes more common with advancing age. Loss of bone strength from osteoporosis can lead to fractures, and at the same time, muscle elasticity and tone decrease. The intervertebral discs begin to lose fluid and flexibility with age, which decreases their ability to cushion the vertebrae. The risk of spinal stenosis also increases with age.

Fitness level: Back pain is more common among people who are not physically fit. Weak back and abdominal muscles may not properly support the spine. Weekend warriorspeople who go out and exercise a lot after being inactive all weekare more likely to suffer painful back injuries than people who make moderate physical activity a daily habit. Studies show that low-impact aerobic exercise can help maintain the integrity of intervertebral discs.

Weight gain: Being overweight, obese, or quickly gaining significant amounts of weight can put stress on the back and lead to low back pain.

Genetics: Some causes of back pain, such as ankylosing spondylitis , have a genetic component.

Smoking: It can restrict blood flow and oxygen to the discs, causing them to degenerate faster.

Backpack overload in children: A backpack overloaded with schoolbooks and supplies can strain the back and cause muscle fatigue.

Stretch Your Hamstrings Twice Daily

Home Remedies: How To Relieve Lower Back Pain

One often overlooked contributor to lower back pain is tight hamstrings. If your hamstring muscleslocated in the back of your thighsare too tight hamstrings your lower back and sacroiliac joints will be stressed, leading to more pain. Hamstring stretching should be done carefully and at least twice per day for 15-30 seconds each time.

There are many gentle stretching exercises that should not hurt.

Watch:Wall Hamstring Stretch for Low Back Pain Relief Video

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Using Good Posture And Protecting Your Back

  • 1Maintain a proper posture to avoid straining muscles in your back. When you sit, keep your spine straight under your neck with your feet flat on the floor. Avoid slouching and keep your eyes facing forward. When standing up, keep your spine straight with your back directly under your legs. Avoid slumping forward or leaning against the wall to keep your spine in a neutral position.XTrustworthy SourceHarvard Medical SchoolHarvard Medical School’s Educational Site for the PublicGo to source
  • Counterintuitively, hard-backed chairs are actually better for back pain than soft sofas or cushioned chairs. Its easier for your spine to become misaligned if the back of the chair isnt holding it in place.
  • 2Lie on your side or back when you sleep and prop your feet up. When you go to bed, you can lie on your side or back, but avoid sitting up in bed or lying face-down. For your side, slide a pillow between your knees and bend then at 35- to 45-degree angle. If youre lying on your back, slide a pillow directly under knees to alleviate the pressure on your back.XResearch source
  • When it comes to your mattress, a firm mattress with a soft top is ideal.
  • Lifting belts are not really proven to prevent back injuries, so dont rely on a one to protect yourself. They may be able to alleviate some lifting pain, though.XResearch source
  • Keep the object that youre lifting centered in your chest. If you hold it at your side, you may increase the risk of a back injury.
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