Medically Reviewed by Dr. K on 27 April 2021
Table of Contents:
- 5 Things That Can Relieve Your Low Back Pain
- Find a Physical Therapist
- Keep Moving, Keep Stretching
- Manipulation or Massage
- Ice and Heat
- Calm Your Mind
5 Things That Can Relieve Your Low Back Pain
You've most likely had lower back pain at some point in your life. It impacts more than 80% of people at some stage in their lives. It is still the leading source of job-related disability in the United States. Though medication can be beneficial, you may also achieve comfort and reduced pain by following these simple steps.
1. Find a Physical Therapist
This can make a huge difference, particularly if the pain has been troubling you for more than 4-6 weeks. These specialists assist you in being more agile and flexible by using techniques such as electrical stimulation, ultrasound, heat, and muscle relaxation.
They will even show you exercises that you can do on your own to prevent recurrence of your symptoms. These will help you maintain good posture as well as the health of your back and abdominal muscles (the core).
2. Keep Moving, Keep Stretching
Are you afraid to resume your exercise routine? It's reasonable. Moreover, you want to remain cautious and prevent situations that would aggravate your condition. But did you realize that getting up and moving will help your chronic back pain? Muscle spasms can be avoided when exercising regularly.
People who remain healthy despite low back pain have greater flexibility than those who play it safe and stay in bed for a week, according to studies. The most beneficial exercises are those that both strengthen and stretch your body. Swimming, riding a stationary bike, or low-impact aerobics are all options in addition to walking.
Yoga and stretching can also help to relieve pain and strengthen back movement, according to research. 228 individuals with mild pain for at least 3 months were split into three groups by scientists. For 12 weeks, two groups attended a 75-minute yoga or stretching class once a week. The third group received a book of exercises and lifestyle changes they might implement to alleviate their discomfort.
Those that did yoga or intense stretching after three months performed better than those who did not. They took less medication for their back pain 6 months later. During follow-up appointments, they have said that their pain has improved or gone altogether.
Although exercising is one of the most effective ways to ease back pain, it does not cause pain or make it worse. If that's the case, consult your doctor or physical therapist to ensure you're doing the right exercise.
3. Manipulation or Massage
Manipulation is a technique used by physical therapists and other health professionals, such as chiropractors, to move your spine through its entire range of movements. If you've experienced back pain for more than a month, studies indicate that this is a secure and successful treatment. However, you might need several sessions.
Massage can also be beneficial. People who received either structural massage (soft-tissue techniques to address problems with your muscles or skeleton) or relaxation massage (stroking, kneading, or circular movements to make you relax) reported improved symptoms after 10 weeks, according to one study. They were able to get through their day-to-day activities with less difficulty and used less pain medicine than someone who only received regular care. Speak to your doctor regarding seeking a qualified health professional or massage therapist if you want to pursue manipulation or massage.
4. Ice and Heat
While there isn't much proof that ice relieves symptoms, some people say it does. Do you like to see if it works for you? Ice the lower back at least three times a day — in the morning, after work or school, and before bedtime. To protect your skin, wrap the ice or cold pack in a towel. Keep it going for no more than 15-20 minutes at a time.
Low back pain can be relieved with heat. Baths, showers, and hot packs are all good options for moist heat. However, you can use an electronic heating pad. It can be applied to your aching back for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Set a timer to assure you don't fall asleep when it's running. Often use a low or medium setting on the pad but never a high setting. It has the potential to inflict severe burns.
5. Calm Your Mind
According to research, your mental health has a greater impact on your chances of developing low back pain than clinical tests including MRIs and disk injections. Those who suffer from chronic pain or have difficulty dealing with life's challenges are almost three times more likely to suffer from back pain than someone who does not. That means if you're always worried or assume the worst in any case, you're more prone to having the pain.
Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), for example, is a type of psychotherapy that can help you ease your symptoms. This exercise teaches you to tune out negative thoughts and concentrate on your breathing. Look up tutorials about how to use these techniques on the internet.
Referenced on 14.4.2021
- Mayo Clinic: “Low Back Pain: Treatments and Drugs.”
- UpToDate: “Patient education: Low back pain in adults (Beyond the Basics).”
- National Institutes of Health: “Massage Therapy Holds Promise for Low-Back Pain,” “4 Things to Know About Spinal Manipulation for Low-Back Pain,” “Yoga or Stretching Eases Low Back Pain,” “Low Back Pain Fact Sheet.”
- University of Michigan: “Use Heat or Ice to Relieve Low Back Pain,” “Massage Therapy Holds Promise for Low-Back Pain.”
- Stanford University: “Psychological Factors Appear to Inflame Back Pain.”
- Harvard Medical School: “The Psychology of Low Back Pain.”