Maybe you carried something heavy or bent over your computer for too many hours. Whatever the cause, you are now arching backwards in pain, wishing to be put out of your misery. The sad news is that unless you have a slipped disc or other visible injuries, the best a doctor can do for you is prescribe pain medicine. The good news is there are several natural remedies for back pain that really work.
Lie in bed with pillows
Back pain is often caused by muscle strain. To relieve the strain, lie in bed, flat on your back with pillows under the knees. Avoid lying on your stomach because in this position, the head twists to the side causing strain on the neck. You want your spine to be straight and relaxed. If your mattress is too soft and saggy, consider sleeping on a more firm surface.
Use an ice pack
Cooling down reduces swelling and should be used in the first 24 hours after an injury. Ice will reduce the sensation of pain and helps prevent inflammation. You can make your own icepack by filling a plastic bag or ziplock bag with ice. A neat alternative would be to soak a sponge with water, put it in a ziplock and freeze it. While the water melts in the ziplock, the sponge absorbs the liquid. Ice the painful area for 20 minutes, take it off for half an hour, then ice again for 20 minutes. To avoid cold burns, never apply ice directly on the skin, use a towel or t-shirt as a thin barrier.
Relax in hot bath or sauna or apply a heat pack
Heat therapy increases muscle elasticity and circulation which reduces pain and encourages healing. Apply heat 24 hours after an injury after cold therapy, otherwise the heat will only make inflammation worse. (However this therapy is not recommended to Pregnant women. They can use localized heat packs or hot bottles instead, applied on painful areas for less than 20 minutes at a time.
Try massage therapy
Ask a friend to give you a massage if a professional isn’t available. Kneading muscles forces it to relax, even when you cannot relax on your own. If back pain is a symptom of emotional stress, try relaxing exercises like meditation and yoga. With practice, most people are able to manage stress and their physical symptoms too.
Take up Swimming
For the unfortunate souls who suffer from chronic back pain, start swimming. A dip in the pool is considered the best aerobic exercise for a back in bad shape. Swimming or even just walking around in a chest deep pool, tones abdominal and back muscles without causing too much strain on the joints and spine. Water supports your weight, decompresses the spine.
If you experience other symptoms along with back pain such as numb legs, or loss of bowel and bladder control, do not delay to consult a health professional.
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