Can Your Mattress Cause Lower Back Pain
Because it is a principal means of supporting the body during sleep, a mattress can play an important role in preventing or reducing lower back pain.
Proper spinal alignment demands a mattress that is in good condition and doesnt sag excessively. Research supports using a medium-firm mattress to combat lower back pain, although the most appropriate firmness can vary based on a persons weight, body shape, sleeping position, and individual comfort preferences.
Know Your Otc Medications
Nonprescription pain relievers can help with muscle aches and stiffness. The two main types of over-the-counter options are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and acetaminophen. NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen.
True to their name, NSAIDs help lower inflammation that can lead to swelling and tenderness. But acetaminophen does not relieve inflammation. You can reach for either type of pain reliever for occasional back pain. NSAIDs may work a bit better, Hemani says, if you have arthritis of the spine or other inflammatory conditions.
Core Stability Pelvic Tilt
Lack of core control and stability is a key player in lower back pain. When the abdominal muscles are not performing, the muscles of the lumbar spine have to work harder to stabilize the body in balance. An excellent way to improve core stability is to lie flat with the knees bent up. Tighten abdominal muscles and press the small of the back into the floor. Hold this contraction for 10 seconds and repeat 10-20 times. You can either have your arms resting by your sides or behind your head, depending on whats more comfortable. With this stretch, it is important remember:
- Keep your feet flat on the floor
- Keep your shoulders pressed to the floor, but relaxed
- Do not hold your breath as you perform this exercise
While lower back pain is extremely common, it is not something you have to live with every day. Improving hip flexibility and core stability as well as lengthening the back muscles by stretching can help reduce the symptoms of lower back pain. However, if your back pain is chronic, the above stretches may help but additional treatment may be warranted.
You May Like: How To Relieve Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy
Which Low Back Exercise Is Right For You
If you are experiencing pain on one side of your back or leg, then try the first exercise and monitor symptoms as you exercise. Watch for centralization, which is a decrease in leg or thigh pain and an increase in low back pain. Centralization that occurs while you are performing an exercise is a good sign and indicates that the particular exercise is the correct one for you to be doing.
If your symptoms worsen, fail to centralize, or only centralize partially, move on to the next exercise in the list. Attempt the exercise, and monitor any changes in your symptoms. Remember pain that moves closer to your spine is a good sign.
Before starting any exercise for your back, it is a good idea to check in with your doctor to be sure that exercise is safe for you to do. Your local physical therapist can help you decide on the best exercises for your specific condition.
Symptoms Of Herniated Lumbar Disc:
Lower back pain Leg pain Leg numbness or tingling Pain is worse from sitting Restricted trunk flexionSciatica pain
Please note, a herniated disc DOESNT always cause pain, so you must get a proper diagnosis.
Lower back pain is typically the first symptom of a lumbar disc herniation. Often this pain will last for a few days and then subside, but leg pain, numbness or tingling, and/or weakness of the lower extremity often follows.
Typically the leg pain eventually travels below the knee and can even affect the ankle and foot.
How long does the pain last?
Most patients with a lumbar disc herniation will improve gradually over a period of days to weeks, with most patients being symptom free within 3 to 4 months.
Patients that actively participate in an exercise program often report a significant reduction of pain and improved ability to perform their activities of daily living.
Also Check: Does Sativa Help With Back Pain
When Is The Right Time To Seek Professional Advice
- continues after a few weeks
- worsens or if you have sudden severe pain
- interferes with your quality of life and stops you doing daily activities
- occurs with other concerning symptoms such as incontinence, numbness or weakness in the legs, fever, nausea or vomiting.
- Most cases of lower back pain on the right side are not medical emergencies. However, if you have symptoms of appendicitis, kidney infection, kidney stones or testicular torsion you should see a doctor immediately
How Do Sleeping Positions Affect Lower Back Pain
Another link between sleep and lower back pain is tied to how sleeping position affects spinal alignment. Although posture is typically associated with sitting and standing, its also critical when lying down.
A sleeping position that involves twisting, contorting, or otherwise putting pressure on the lumbar spine can cause pain and stiffness. This pain is often worse in the morning but may persist throughout the day.
You May Like: What Is The Best Remedy For Lower Back Pain
Sitting Comfortably At Your Desk
Biohack #: Rumble Roller + Peanut Roller + Pso
Every morning, I specifically rolled up and down and sheared back and forth my quadratus lumborum, gluteus medius, gluteus minimus, psoas, iliacus, IT bands, and adductors. I also ran a peanut-shaped roller up and down the vertebra of my low back, then used a PSO-Rite device to dig deep into and release my psoas .
You can get the Rumble Roller, the Peanut roller here and the PSO-Rite device here.
You May Like: Can Lying Down Too Much Cause Back Pain
How Are Sleep And Lower Back Pain Related
Researchers have long seen an association between lower back pain and sleeping problems, and growing evidence points a two-way relationship in which they can be mutually reinforcing.
Discomfort from pain can be a major barrier to sleep. Lower back pain makes it hard to get comfortable enough to fall asleep or may provoke nighttime awakenings when pain surges.
At the same time, people with sleep problems are more likely to start having pain or to have pain get worse. Experts arent certain why this happens, but there are several potential explanations. Sleep deprivation may impair healing, affect mood in a way that heightens pain sensitivity, or disrupt chemicals in the brain that are involved in how we experience pain.
Tips To Relieve The Pain
- Stay active and continue your daily routines. Resting is likely to make your pain worse.
- Apply heat or ice for about twenty minutes frequently throughout the day to ease your pain and any inflammation.
- Try exercises for back pain and activities including walking, swimming, yoga and Pilates.
- Take over-the-counter pain relief such as ibuprofen.
- Stretch tight muscles for a few minutes every day.
- Keep good posture as this will ease the pressure on your lower back.
- Maintain a healthy weight to ensure an optimal load on your lower back.
- Ensure you lift safely by bending with your knees to a squat position and holding the load close to your chest.
- Drink plenty of water every day and limit your intake of animal protein and salt to reduce your risk of kidney stones.
- Wipe from front to back when going to the toilet to prevent infection from bacteria in your colon passing to your urinary tract.
- Give up smoking as the nicotine in tobacco can weaken your spinal bones and remove nutrients from your discs that may lead to spine problems.
Read Also: How To Stop Back Pain During Period
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.
Stay updated on the latest science-backed health, fitness, and nutrition news by signing up for the Prevention.com newsletter here.
What Research Is Being Done
The mission of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke is to seek fundamental knowledge of the brain and nervous system and to use that knowledge to reduce the burden of neurological disease. NINDS is a component of the National Institutes of Health , the leading supporter of biomedical research in the world.
As a primary supporter of research on pain and pain mechanisms, NINDS is a member of the NIH Pain Consortium, which was established to promote collaboration among the many NIH Institutes and Centers with research programs and activities addressing pain. On an even broader scale, NIH participates in the Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee, a federal advisory committee that coordinates research across other U.S. Department of Health and Human Services agencies as well as the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs.
Also Check: What Kind Of Cancer Causes Back Pain
Hot Or Cold Therapy For Low Back Pain
Hot or cold packs may help ease pain and reduce symptoms. The soothing relief from heat, or the dulling relief from a cold pack, is only temporary and will not treat more serious causes of back pain. However, they may provide greater mobility for people with acute, subacute, or chronic pain, allowing them to get up and get moving.
What Are Some Other Causes Of Lower Back Pain
The shape of your spine, and well as spinal diseases, are other culprits in lower back pain. Depending on a range of factors, your doctor may look for:
Abnormal spinal curvature. A normal spine resembles a gently curved letter S when seen from the side. Abnormal curves include:
- Lordosis, in which the spine curves too far inward at the lower back
- Kyphosis, in which the spine is abnormally rounded in the upper back
- Scoliosis, in which the spine curves from side to side, often in a C shape
Normal and abnormal curves of the spineArthritis. There are more than 100 types of arthritis, many of which can cause lower back pain. The most common types include osteoarthritis , rheumatoid arthritis, and ankylosing spondylitis.
Cauda equina syndrome . Compression of the bundle of nerves that forms below the spinal cord in the lumbar spine. It is a rare but serious disorder that requires immediate medical attention and possibly emergency surgery. CES got its name from the fact that the fanned-out bundle of nerves resembles the base of a horses tail.
Discitis or osteomyelitis.Both infections of discs and bone can cause severe pain and require prompt medical attention.
Spinal tumors. When cells divide and multiply unchecked, the result is a tumor. Both benign and malignant tumors can cause lower back pain. They can either originate in the spine or metastasize there, meaning theyve spread from somewhere else in the body.
Don’t Miss: Is Foam Mattress Good For Back Pain
How To Treat A Pulled Back Muscle In 8 Steps
A pulled back muscle can begin as a sudden, sharp pain when lifting or bending. Or it may appear gradually, getting progressively worse over several days. This common injury ranges from a minor inconvenience to an intense source of pain. It can take several weeks, and in some cases a few months, to heal.1
A pulled muscle is the common term for a strained muscle.2 A strain is a muscle or tendon injury that happens when the tissue stretches or tears. When a ligament stretches or tears, its called a sprain. Back pain, often due to a pulled muscle, is one of the most common issues health professionals treat.2 In most cases, you can manage and treat symptoms at home. But if the pain is unbearable or makes it difficult to move, see a doctor.
Biohack #: Grounding Patches
You can to listen to my recent podcast with Clint Ober, in which we discuss the little known tactic of grounding to reduce inflammation and accelerate healing. For this, I used the grounding patches in Clint’s Ultimate Longevity website. I put them on the whole day while working at the standing workstation in my office, for at least 20-30 minutes each time: one on front of hips and one on lower back as close to the area of pain as possible. This type of spot treatment works better than laying on a ground mat. Grounding not only reduces pain, but also alters the numbers of circulating neutrophils and lymphocytes, and can affect various circulating chemical factors related to inflammation.
You can get the same grounding patches I used here.
Also Check: Can Lower Back Pain Radiate To The Front
Trigger Point Foam Roller
The Grid Trigger Point Foam Roller
Unlike a regular foam roller, trigger point foam rollers are compact, heavy-duty foam rollers with different patterns on the surface for a variety of manipulations and applications.
They really put the regular foam rollers to shame. They wont crumble apart after a few weeks of use and they can really be helpful for your sore muscles.
Simply lie down on the roller and move around until you feel the pressure on your muscle knot. Roll over the painful area for about 30 seconds and repeat 3 times.
The Grid Foam Roller comes with a great guide on how to use it on different parts of the body, which is very helpful.
An infrared heating pad is probably the least known muscle knots reliever, yet the most effective one in my experience.
First, its highly effective. For me, it works every time, and youll have trouble finding even one person claiming that an infrared heat pad hasnt helped relieve their pain any kind of pain without medication.
Second, it requires you to doabsolutely nothing.
All you have to do is take a 30-minute nap while youre on it. Or read a book. Or watch television.
My Infrared heating pad has made my home much more popular in the last few years.
It can be used to relieve any type of pain, anywhere in your body, safely and naturally.
And, it has many other amazing uses which Ive written about many times.
Here Are The Top 10 You Can Do At Home:
The first thing youll notice is that some of these movements are fairly hard to do. Thats the very point.
They are really a test to show you how much you need to use them to regain your lost strength and flexibility. As it becomes easier for you to do them, the better youll feel.
Important: After trying these 10, be sure to . This course reverses your discomfort by teaching you step by step, in order, how to correct your problems long term.
Each link below explains the movements in full. The eBook which contains a complete set of exercises to address your discomfort in depth
To go directly to each action, click on each one.
Recommended Reading: How To Relieve Lower Middle Back Pain
Nonspecific Low Back Pain
This is the most common type of back pain. The majority of cases of sudden-onset low back pain are classed as nonspecific. This is the type of back pain that most people will have at some point in their lives. It is called nonspecific because it is usually not clear what is actually causing the pain. In other words, there is no specific problem or disease that can be identified as the cause of the pain. The severity of the pain can vary from mild to severe. This type of back pain is discussed further below.