There used to be a TV commercial which avowed, "When you have your health, you have just about everything!" That commercial was right – just ask anyone with frequent back pain! Of course this wisdom holds true for anyone who is sick or in pain for any reason. But there's no doubt that back pain relief is a major source of concern for tens of millions of Americans because back pain is so frequent and so all-pervasive. If your back hurts, EVERYTHING in life is worse.
Back pain prevention is always the best way, of course, but lower back pain, in particular, is easily developed and we can't say that WE won't be the next sufferers. So we need to begin by figuring the cause of most pain so that we can take steps to prevent this dread misery from dropping by our own homes.
Most back pain is due to muscle and/or ligament strain. These occur when we lift heavy objects or in other ways strain our back by using it unwisely. For instance, you need to pick up a relatively heavy box on the floor and move it. What do you do? We're advised to keep our backs erect and bend our knees and grasp the box from that position. In this way, the strain is on our legs, rather than our back, which are much better suited for lifting and are less likely to be injured.
But I don't do this – do you? Instead, I automatically bend over and strain to pick up the box and most of us behave in the same foolish way. I just don't think before I lift and strain. And besides, that seems so awkward and weird. Of course, those of us who have suffered excruciating bad pain in the past may remember more easily. The result of thoughtlessness like this is often back pain.
Then there is more serious pain like that which occurs if the discs in your back are injured or your spinal nerves have been damaged in some way. Chiropractors are great for this kind of misery. I have been going for years and wouldn't even think of quitting. Others don't believe in chiropractic and go to doctors. Do whatever is preferable for you but just be aware that this is more serious than over-activity or unwise use of your back and its muscles. There is no exact guideline for using the term "chronic" when referring to back pain, but three months is a reasonable number.
Relieve Back Pain With Lower Back Pain Exercises
Lower back pain exercises can have a powerful effect over time. There are exercises available everywhere and the only decision is to decide which ones bring you the most relief. Here is an example of one of the simple back pain exercises that can bring relief – often fairly soon. We want to not only relieve pain now, but to strengthen our back so that this misery is less likely to occur in the future.
* Lie on your back with both knees bent.
* Hold thigh behind knee and bring one knee up to chest.
* Hold 20 seconds.
* Repeat 5 times on each side.
The Mayo Clinic offers a useful slide show with several back exercises.
Back Pain Treatment With Heat And Cold
First, using warmth to ease back pains … pour warm water into two hot water bottles or use two heating pads and apply this heat to the outer area or sides of your pain. Back pain is most often the result of inflammation and applying heat directly to the area that is inflamed is ill-advised. Leave the warmth in place for 15-30 minutes and repeat every three or four hours.
The heat can increase blood circulation, relax the muscles and speed up healing. Never sleep on a heating pad or you will overheat your bodily tissues.
Heats can be very useful if the cause is strained muscles. If it's more serious, you are most likely under the care of the doctor and she can advise you if this is a useful strategy.
Cold therapy can definitely be applied to any inflamed area and it will likely reduce that fiery pain. Simply wrap some ice cubes in a plastic sack and zip it shut, then surround with a cloth. (The plastic will keep the ice from melting all over your mattress or sofa.) Just like the heat therapy, apply for 15-30 minutes at a time, every three-four hours.
Before taking medications and drugs, try this simple therapy for back pain relief. Drugs should always be the last resort rather than reaching for that bottle at the first twinge of discomfort.