One of the most common problems that most people today experience is back pain. There are many different types of back pain, and they are divided into two main types, which are acute and chronic. Acute or short-term back pain is the common type, and it usually resolves itself in just 3 to 6 weeks. Chronic back pain, on the other hand, exists if pain and symptoms persist for longer than 3 months.
There are different ways to deal with back pain, depending on which phase you are in. Therefore, it is better to consult with healthcare professionals or experts that can make a proper diagnosis, give proper treatment, and provide pain management. But if you are searching for simple ways on how you can deal with back pain, you’re in the right place. Today, we are giving you tips for dealing with back pain.
1. Do not sit for a long period
Sitting for an extended period puts your back into a loaded, flexed position, which the spine does not like. To avoid worsening your back pain, try to change positions every 30 or 40 minutes by standing up, going for a little walk, or grabbing a glass of water. While sitting, ensure that you sit with good posture and proper lumbar support. This will help decrease the load on your back. It is also best to visit a physiotherapist so they can prescribe appropriate lumbar support specific to your needs.
Sitting for too long exacerbates any underlying issues you may have and heightens your risk for developing added problems. If you must remain seated for extended periods, try changing the way that you sit; different postures can help keep blood flowing and prevent straining in certain areas of the back.
2. Try to find a comfortable sleeping position
Sleeping with proper support is very important. If you are used to sleeping on your side, you can put a pillow between your legs to remove extra pressure through your hips and lower back. If you sleep on your back, put a pillow or a rolled-up towel underneath your knees to allow your lumbar spine to relax in a neutral position. These will help ease any pressure on the spine.
You can also try sleeping on your back but be sure to use several pillows beneath your knees to avoid straining your lower back muscles. Remember, finding a comfortable sleeping position every night will help give you relief from chronic or acute back pain so that you can wake up feeling refreshed and energized for the day ahead.
3. Avoid staying in one position for a long period
This also ties with not sitting for a long period. Do not stand, lie down, or stay in other positions for a long time. Try to change the positions you’re in by taking breaks, doing some stretching, and going for a short walk. If your work involves the use of a computer the whole day, it’s better to invest in adjustable desks, so you can vary your positions from sitting to standing.
Try mixing up your activity throughout the day; if you’ve been sitting or standing for a while, take a break and move around or lie down. It’s also important that you’re mindful of how much pressure you’re placing on your back during routine activities like lifting heavy objects, bending over, and carrying bags or purses. By taking these precautions, you can likely find relief from back pain without relying solely on medication.
4. Do some stretching
Our backs are made to move, bend, and twist. There will be times that your muscle will become tight due to the back pain you are experiencing. That feeling of tightness is trying to warn you that there is a lack of blood flow, especially to the nerves, which are thirsty for blood. This means that your muscles are asking you to stretch them to increase the blood flow to the area and lengthen the muscles that are tight. Therefore, stretching daily can help in protecting your back in the long run.
Whether you’re often active or stay mostly sedentary, it’s important to be conscious of your posture and how it affects your spine. Even if you spend much of the day in a seated position for work, there are stretches you can do throughout your day to help improve blood flow, reduce stiffness, and increase flexibility.
Deep breathing with some yoga poses like cat-cow sequences or a gentle twist can be just enough to keep back pain from becoming more intense.
5. Apply heat to the affected area
Using ice and heat packs can help decrease muscle spasms and improve blood flow through the body. You can use an ice pack for back pain as often as you need to get relief from pain caused by acute or chronic injury.
Heat can relax your muscles and improve circulation which can help reduce inflammation that may be causing pain. This is especially beneficial for those suffering from chronic back pain such as lower back pain or arthritis of the spine.
Heating pads or warm showers are some easy ways to apply heat for immediate relief but make sure not to apply it directly to skin as it may cause burns.
6. Take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
You can take these medicines as recommended by your healthcare professional. This kind of medication is commonly used to manage pain and inflammation associated with musculoskeletal disorders, including back pains.
These medications should always be taken cautiously, however, as there can be potentially serious side effects. If your back pain is intense or has not started to improve within a week of using an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drug, it is important to seek the advice of a medical professional.
7. Exercise regularly
Exercise can boost the blood flow to your back and promote healing. Even if your body is telling you to just lie in bed all day, your back needs you to be active. The best thing that you can do is to take a walk. You don’t need to do extreme exercises or go on a hike. A light and relaxing walk for about 30 minutes will do your body and mind a favor by keeping them happy. Aside from that, exercise can also help release endorphins, which stimulates the euphoric feeling, and it also acts as a painkiller. Therefore, being active can help in easing your back pain.
Adding a variety of exercises into your weekly routine can also be beneficial as this will increase flexibility in different areas, reducing tightness and helping to alleviate aches. In addition, it is crucial to target particular muscles in areas where the pain is more severe, including the gluteus minimus, which can result in lower back discomfort. Furthermore, the typical pain patterns associated with gluteus minimus pain exhibit symptoms that overlap with other muscle pains and spinal issues. However, it’s important to remember that when doing any form of exercise you should listen to your body, as going too far can actually worsen your back pain. Better start off by focusing on low impact exercises such as gentle stretches, Pilates or swimming and alter movements so that no difficult pain is felt during or afterwards.
8. Apply pressure on the affected area
A back massage can provide relief for all types of pain. However, it is not a long-term solution. If you are suffering from chronic back pain, your body, and as well as your mind, can benefit from a massage or therapy. It is also a great stress reliever, which is perfect for pain relief and your overall wellbeing.
Whether you use a handheld massager, a foam roller, or even kneading your own muscles, applying appropriate pressure can help loosen up tight muscles and reduce discomfort.
9. Maintain a healthy weight
It’s not easy to talk about weight, but it needs to be addressed. Being overweight puts a strain on the back muscles. All of us have an ideal frame weight. Therefore, if we have an excess of ideal frame weight, it means that we are putting more strain on our body and putting the body at risk for injury. If you are overweight, it is important to trim down and reduce your chance of getting back pain or worsening the pain.
If you carry extra weight, the extra pressure on your spine can exacerbate any existing issues, whereas reducing your body weight even slightly can help reduce one of the primary sources of pain in your back.
Before embarking on any kind of weight loss program, consult your doctor as they can ensure that losing weight does not cause other health problems.
Lifestyle adjustments such as eating healthy foods, reducing processed foods and sugary drinks and exercising regularly can have a positive effect on your overall health as well as your back pain.
10. Try to find your Zen
Back pain can be worsened by stress and anxiety. People who are suffering from lower back pain and engage in mindfulness-based stress reduction, cognitive-behavioral therapy, or biofeedback say they experience less pain. If you want to try this, you can look for a licensed therapist for pain relief.
Taking time regularly to relax and de-stress can also improve mental health which helps with reducing back pain. While it is important to get physical treatment for your back pain from a doctor or specialist, trying out different mindfulness techniques may offer additional relief as well as improved overall wellbeing.
These are some of the best tips we can give for dealing with back pain. But aside from these tips, it is important to visit your physiotherapist if you are experiencing back pains, as he or she can give a detailed assessment on how to treat and manage your pain. We hope these tips will help you in dealing with back pains.