% Of People Will Experience Back Pain At Some Time But There Are Ways To Find Relief
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:
Find Relief Through Ice And Heat
Break out that bag of frozen peas for the first 48 hours after the pain sets in, and put it to use for 20 minutes a session, several sessions per day. After those two days are behind you, switch to 20-minute intervals with a heating pad.
Localized cooling shuts down capillaries and reduces blood flow to the area, which helps ease the swelling, says Lisa DeStefano, DO, an associate professor at Michigan State Universitys College of Osteopathic Medicine in East Lansing. Cold also thwarts your nerves ability to conduct pain signals. Heat, on the other hand, loosens tight muscles and increases circulation, bringing extra oxygen to the rescue.
One Back Pain Treatment You Probably Dont Need
Back pain can be incredibly frustrating, and going under the knife may seem like the quickest, easiest fix to bring relief. But the truth is, many people dont need surgery for lower back pain management, Dr. Park says.
If your back pain is musculoskeletal, you will not require surgery, but if its a pinched nerve thats due to a disc herniation or something else, you may need to have surgery, he says. But even in those people, when you go through a six-to-eight-week course of treatment that includes physical therapy and activity modification, 85 to 90 percent of the time, they wont need surgery.
However, if you try the treatments above and dont see any improvement or still feel pain, talk to your doctor about a referral to a pain management specialist, as more specific tests or treatments may be required to get to the bottom of whats going on.
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Best Home Treatments To Relieve Back Pain
Back pain can easily ruin your day and it typically occurs if something is wrong with your bodys delicate column. The column is made up of joints, ligaments, muscles, and bones, responsible for keeping you upright. In some cases, another condition like arthritis, strains, fractures, kidney infections, and hairline spine fractures can lead to back pain. Since you cant just ignore back pain for peace of mind and health you should learn some self-care measures at home.
The Best Lower Back Inflammation Home Treatment
The first step in treating lumbar inflammation is natural pain relief.
As long as youre in pain, its very hard to be motivated to do anything else, if at all.
I hope you already know that taking NSAIDs is no solution.
Even if they temporarily relieve your pain, they wont actually cure the inflammation and the huge price you liver and kidneys will pay for it is not worth it.
Science has already proven that some foods and herbs are just as effective pain relievers as the common pain killers, without any side effects and risks.
Lets start with the ultimate anti-inflammation foods & herbs:
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Try Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is another popular remedy for back pain with a lot of anecdotal support but fairly little scientific backing.
It is suggested that the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of ACV may be responsible for its therapeutic effect, but further studies are needed to understand the exact mechanism and efficacy of this remedy in providing relief from back pain.
How to use:
- Add a few drops of coconut oil to unfiltered ACV to bring down its potency, and gently rub this mixture all over your lower back.
- Mix 12 tablespoons of ACV in a glass of water, and drink this tonic once a day to alleviate the symptoms of back pain.
How Is Low Back Pain Diagnosed
A complete medical history and physical exam can usually identify any serious conditions that may be causing the pain. Neurologic tests can help determine the cause of pain and appropriate treatment. Imaging tests are not needed in most cases but may be ordered to rule out specific causes of pain, including tumors and spinal stenosis. Occasionally the cause of chronic lower back pain is difficult to determine even after a thorough examination.
Blood tests are not routinely used to diagnose the cause of back pain but might be ordered to look for signs of inflammation, infection, cancer, and/or arthritis.
Bone scans can detect and monitor an infection, fracture, or bone disorder. A small amount of radioactive material is injected into the bloodstream and collects in the bones, particularly in areas with some abnormality. Scanner-generated images can identify specific areas of irregular bone metabolism or abnormal blood flow, as well as to measure levels of joint disease.
Discography involves injecting a contrast dye into a spinal disc thought to be causing low back pain. The fluids pressure in the disc will reproduce the persons symptoms if the disc is the cause. The dye helps to show the damaged areas on CT scans taken following the injection.
Electrodiagnostics can identify problems related to the nerves in the back and legs. The procedures include:
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Overlooked Remedies For Lower Back Pain Relief
When lower back pain persists and continues to interfere with your quality of life, multiple treatment options may be needed for adequate relief. Below are some back pain treatments that are commonly overlooked or underused. Try one or more of these remedies to see which one, or combination, works best for you.
Proven Home Remedies For Lower Back Pain
Stocksy/Design by Cristina Cianci
Low back pain is a common condition, leading to missed work, lower productivity, and a lower quality of life. Although your healthcare professional should evaluate any lingering pain, there are, luckily, a few lower back pain remedies you can try at home. But don’t take it from uswe asked two physical therapists exactly how to treat lower back pain at home, be the soreness from a tough workout or slouching in your desk chair. Discover them aheadfrom specific stretches to simple lifestyle changes.
Meet the Expert
- Ai Mukai, MD, is a Physiatrist at Texas Orthopedics in Austin.
- Leada Malek is a San Fransico-based physical therapist.
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Ask Your Doctor About Biofeedback
In recent years, biofeedback a type of mind-body technique that uses electrical sensors to help you make subtle changes in your body has grown in popularity as an effective way to manage back pain. A suggested that biofeedback could reduce the intensity of back pain and muscle tension, both as a standalone treatment and when combined with other treatments.
Applying A Topical Temedy
There are a couple of topical patches, creams, and gels having anti-numbing or pain-relieving ingredients to offer pain relief. These ingredients tend to enter your tissues and then work on the symptoms locally. There are hardly any side effects, keeping long-term issues at bay.
Some of the topical medications available over the counter are menthol, camphor, capsaicin, methyl salicylate, and trolamine salicylate. In some products, multiple ingredients may be present to give relief quicker than usual.
Just note that while using these topical medications, do not simultaneously use a heat or ice pack. This is because using both therapies can change or modify the effects of topical remedies.
You can even choose natural topical medications. One of the most common natural remedies is applying a fenugreek paste. To prepare it, you need fenugreek seeds that you then convert into the powdered form and add two teaspoons of it to milk to get a spreadable thickness.
You can then apply this paste twice a day. Fenugreek seeds are powerful anti-inflammatory ingredients.
Another natural option to consider is peppermint oil that is known for its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. Its ability to release pain can help. You need to prepare a mix of five to six drops of peppermint oil and a carrier oil such as coconut oil or sweet almond oil and apply it to the affected area.
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Bathing In Epsom Salt
Did you know that magnesium is essential for the proper functioning of nerves in the body? A simple way to get it is through the Epsom salt that is rich in magnesium and sulphate. The human body can easily absorb this salt through its skin pores.
You only need to take a warm bath. Add two cups of this salt to the bathtub filled with hot water and then soak yourself in it. Especially, keep the lower back and legs submerged for half an hour. It is recommended to take this bath thrice a week to feel the difference.
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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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Check With Your Doctor About Over
Were very aware of some of the long-term health risks associated with excessive use of . They have a place when it comes to helping manage pain, but a patient needs to follow the advice of their doctor to minimize any negative effects of that medication, says Stephens.
NSAID use can increase the risk for severe or life-threatening bleeding and in some people, and taking too much of these drugs can also lead to liver or kidney injury or failure.
Achieve A Healthy Weight
More than 70 percent of people in the U.S. are overweight and nearly 40 percent are considered obese. Carrying extra weight can significantly strain your back muscles and spine.
Losing weight can be difficult however, doing so can help control your back pain, prevent the condition from getting worse, and even potentially eliminate the need for pain medication or surgery. If you need help losing weight, request an appointment.
“There are many alternative treatments for back pain, many of which are easy to do at home and affordable, with no doctors prescription necessary.”
Carlos Bagley, M.D.
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What Can Cause Lower Back Pain
Most acute low back pain is mechanical in nature, meaning that there is a disruption in the way the components of the back fit together and move. Some examples of mechanical causes of low back pain include:
- Skeletal irregularities such as scoliosis , lordosis , kyphosis , and other congenital anomalies of the spine.
- Spina bifida which involves the incomplete development of the spinal cord and/or its protective covering and can cause problems involving malformation of vertebrae and abnormal sensations and even paralysis.
- Sprains , strains , and spasms
- Traumatic Injury such as from playing sports, car accidents, or a fall that can injure tendons, ligaments, or muscle causing the pain, as well as compress the spine and cause discs to rupture or herniate.
- Intervertebral disc degeneration which occurs when the usually rubbery discs wear down as a normal process of aging and lose their cushioning ability.
- Spondylosis the general degeneration of the spine associated with normal wear and tear that occurs in the joints, discs, and bones of the spine as people get older.
- Arthritis or other inflammatory disease in the spine, including osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis as well as spondylitis, an inflammation of the vertebrae.
Nerve and spinal cord problems
Ways To Relieve A Back Spasm
Several home remedies can provide relief for back spasms, especially in the early stages of the condition. A simple shift in your daily habits such as exercising regularly and good posture will set you on the right road to recovery. Common relief methods for back spasms include:
Lets get into the specifics of each remedy in detail.
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Ways To Relieve Back Pain Naturally
There are a wide variety of natural remedies to soothe your back, which can help reduce the intake of medications or provide an added benefit to your existing medical treatment.
Take a look at these natural pain-relieving strategies and find out what works best for you:
Read on to learn more about effective pain-relieving strategies for chronic back pain from natural methods.
Get Enough Restorative Sleep
Pain is a leading cause of insomniadifficulty with falling asleep and/or staying asleep. Inadequate sleep can also make your back pain worse. This vicious cycle makes it more difficult for you to get restorative sleep.
Getting enough restorative sleep is needed for the bodys tissues to heal and recharge energy levels. If you have trouble sleeping, it is important to address pain or other factors that are causing it. Your doctor might recommend lifestyle changes, medications, or other treatments depending on what is disrupting your sleep.
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Can Back Pain Result From A Urinary Tract Infection
A urinary tract infection causes redness and irritation in the lining of the urethra and bladder. The infection can further cause pain in the lower abdomen, pelvic area, and even lower back, often increasing your need to urinate. Therefore, pain in the lower back and sides may indicate a urinary tract infection.
Causes Of Lumbar Pain
Lower back pain most often results from
- Tissue injury
- Mechanical issues
- Deteriorating condition
- Abnormal spinal curvature
If the problem is deterioration or unusual spinal anatomy, deeper tissue injuries can arise such as herniated discs or nerve compression. These complications require professional attention. Never ignore serious symptoms such as severe pain, sudden weakness, shooting nerve pain, numbness or tingling. Do not delay seeking help for unusual symptoms.
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Relax And Stay Positive
Trying to relax is a crucial part of easing the pain as muscle tension caused by worrying about your condition may make things worse.
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Although it can be difficult, it helps to stay positive and recognise that your pain should get better. People who manage to stay positive despite their pain tend to recover quicker.
Low Back Pain Fact Sheet
If you have had lower back pain, you are not alone. Back pain is one of most common reasons people see a doctor or miss days at work. Even school-age children can have back pain.
Back pain can range in intensity from a dull, constant ache to a sudden, sharp or shooting pain. It can begin suddenly as a result of an accident or by lifting something heavy, or it can develop over time as we age. Getting too little exercise followed by a strenuous workout also can cause back pain.
There are two types of back pain:
- Acute, or short-term back pain lasts a few days to a few weeks. Most low back pain is acute. It tends to resolve on its own within a few days with self-care and there is no residual loss of function. In some cases a few months are required for the symptoms to disappear.
- Chronic back pain is defined as pain that continues for 12 weeks or longer, even after an initial injury or underlying cause of acute low back pain has been treated. About 20 percent of people affected by acute low back pain develop chronic low back pain with persistent symptoms at one year. Even if pain persists, it does not always mean there is a medically serious underlying cause or one that can be easily identified and treated. In some cases, treatment successfully relieves chronic low back pain, but in other cases pain continues despite medical and surgical treatment.
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