Being one of the most common problems, be it from injuries, arthritis, structural or nerve problem, muscle strains, or lifting something a little too heavy, reducing lower back pain is one of the most frustrating experiences for people of any age.
Even though treatments vary with the cause of the pain, and most bouts of pain go away within a few days, there are some effective generic solutions to avoid and reduce lower back pain in the long run.
So, seven easy, effective, and long-lasting ways to reduce lower back pain?
#1. Apply Ice and Heat
In the case of most reduced lower back pain, including injuries, ice is the best in-house solution in the first 24 to 48 hours as it helps reduce inflammation and eases any swelling. So use a bag of frozen peas or an ice pack for 20 minutes a session, several sessions per day.
Even though the heat might worsen the inflammation, after 2 days, using a heating pad in 20-minute intervals helps relax the muscles, loosens tight muscles, and increases circulation by bringing extra oxygen to the rescue.
Additionally, the warmth feels good because it helps cover up the pain, thus making heat an adequate alternative.
#2. Try a Massage
Good massages ensure improved blood circulation, allowing more nutrients to be absorbed by your muscles and tissues, improving your flexibility by relaxing and loosening up tight muscles, and increasing your endorphin levels, significantly helping reduce lower back pain.
So consider investing in a regular massage therapist or a modern massage chair.
#3. Relax With Yoga
Many researchers and doctors firmly believe in the power of yoga in reducing lower back pain effectively in the long run. Yoga can help you with both emotional and physical triggers of back pain, increase oxygen intake, encourage the production of endorphins, promote deep breathing and relaxation, and stretch and strength by improving circulation and reducing stress.
Yoga instructors, who can help customize a plan that’ll work best for your specific back pain, are extremely readily available in local gyms and classes, and it’s also an option to start a yoga group with friends at home and hence can prove to be the perfect solution for you if exercises are too painful for you.
#4. Switch Your Sleeping Position and Mattress
Unhealthy sleeping positions can cause morning stiffness and pain, sometimes leading to longer-lasting back pain.
Try experimenting with different sleeping positions, including the reclining work, to reduce stress on your lower back. Keeping one pillow under your neck and another between your legs can help substantially.
At times, a too-hard, too-soft, or old and sagging mattress can also cause dull lower backaches, so consider switching your bed with a new medium-firm one instead of a very firm or very soft one.
#5. Keep Stretching
While stretching during backache is the last thing you might feel like doing, it is the most prescribed method for reducing the duration of the pain. Stretches eliminate stiffness, reduce weakness, minimize how often back pain will recur, and reduce the severity and duration of possible future episodes of back pain.
You can approach a doctor to suggest suitable stretches depending on your particular pain. Still, there are generic stretches like Supine hamstring stretch, Two-knee twist, Sphinx, Pigeon or thread-the-needle, and Legs up the wall which are highly recommended for lower backaches.
#6. Just Move It
It is essential to rest when in pain, and it might be instinctual to avoid movement. Still, complete bed rest can be extremely harmful in most cases unless specifically recommended by your doctor. Regular physical activity is essential for good back health. Remember to regularly stand up during long hours at your desk, walk around briskly, make the beds, walk the dog, go to work, and keep moving because our spines are meant to move.
Further, remember that sitting creates 40% more pressure on our spines than standing, so avoid sitting for long durations and try to increase the time you spend on your feet to reduce the duration of pain.
#7. Adjust Your Daily Habits
Even though our insignificant daily unrelated habits don’t seem to have anything to do with our back health, in reality, many of our unhealthy habits can have a profound effect on our spines, causing even chronic reduced lower back pain.
To reduce smoking, relatively high heels, watch your posture while sitting or sleeping, always bend at your knees when you’re picking up objects, don’t carry too much weight in your purse or suitcase, always wear your backpack on both shoulders instead of by a single strap, avoid inflammatory foods, including vitamin and mineral-rich healthy foods in your diet and keep your weight under control to reduce unnecessary pressure on your spine.
Pro Tip: Grab the Right Medication!
Even though it is unnecessary to rush into unnecessary treatments in case of sudden back pain, it is always a good idea to approach the doctor if the pain does not go away within two weeks, especially if the pain is exceptionally sharp, was occasioned by an injury or you have weakness or numbness in your legs.
If the pain is unbearable, till you get the proper treatment, go for over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin), and if you get the appropriate treatment, naproxen sodium (Aleve, Anaprox, Naprosyn). However, Who should take them in manageable quantities?
Finding effective pain relief can be a trial and error, but exploring these highly recommended pain relief approaches is absolutely worth exploring.
So now that you know these practical ways to reduce lower back pain, alter your lifestyle accordingly to avoid and mitigate intermittent or chronic back pain, and live life fully without any pain holding you back!