Simple Yet Effective Home Remedies for Back Pain

Back pain is caused by a variety of reasons such as exertion, old age, obesity, poor posture and many more. Maybe you lifted something heavy, slipped on ice or had a bumpy ride while traveling-back pain is something that all people experience at some point in their lives.  Regardless of whether you think the upper or lower back pain causes are more serious or the minor sort, do check in with your doctor.  Unless the problem is serious, however, back pain can usually be treated at home by adhering to some simple dos and don’ts. Mentioned below are a few effective home remedies for back pain.

9 Easy Remedies You Can Use At Home for Pain Reliefwoman with back pain

1) Get rest: As obvious as it might sound, getting rest is one of the easiest and most efficacious home remedies for back pain. The best way to rest is to recline on a comfortable chair or to lay down flat on your back with a pillow under your knees. If you want to change your position, then shift onto your side and put a pillow between your knees. However, do not rest for too long as this might aggravate the stiffness in your back. Doctors recommend that you should rest for a few hours and then get back to your normal routine. However, keep your activity light – it is crucial to avoid activities that trigger or worsen your back pain. Avoid lifting heavy things, standing or walking for too long and sitting in a slouched position. In most cases, resting for a while causes the back pain to ebb substantially.

2) Apply a hot/cold compress: Applying ice helps to reduce inflammation while a hot compress eases tension within the muscles. Every person has a preference – some prefer ice and others prefer a hot compress. For best results, alternate between ice and a hot compress. Always wrap the compress in a towel as this will prevent your skin from burning. Cold/heat therapy is very effective in treating spasms, sprains and inflammation. It relaxes the muscles and subsequently improves range of motion.

3) Get a back massage: A massage helps to alleviate stiffness and increases blood circulation to the area. An abundant supply of oxygenated blood is crucial for repairing damaged cells. A massage is best administered by a professional massage therapist. However, if you do not have access to a therapist, then ask a friend or a family member to assist you. If no one is around to help you, then help yourself using one of those handheld massagers. Make sure that the massaged is administered in a very gentle manner. A massage must be relaxing – if it is painful, then something is not being done right or you may have a more serious condition. Using a pain relieving ointment while massaging accentuates the benefits of the massage. Such an ointment mimics the hot and cold therapy mentioned above. Pain relieving ointments are easily available at all medical stores without a doctor’s prescription.

4) Pain killer medications and sprays: If the pain is getting unbearable, then first try a pain relieving spray. If this does not work, only then opt for pain killer pills. Examples of such pills include aspirin, ibuprofen etc. These medications almost always work – but do note that they give you acidity and heartburn as well as cause you to feel drowsy. They also don’t really cure the pain – instead, they corrupt your brain’s signals and prevent it from interpreting the pain. Use an antacid to counter the acidity – if you don’t have an antacid – then simply drink some soda or cold milk.

5) Do some exercises: As mentioned earlier, rest interspersed with light activity is among the best home remedies for back pain. Apart from strengthening the body, exercise triggers the secretion of endorphins which are the body’s natural pain killers. The easiest exercise is walking. Walk for a maximum of 10 to 20 minutes and swing your arms in a slightly exaggerated motion. If you have access to a shallow swimming pool, then walking in chest deep water is also an option that you might want to consider – this is known as hydrotherapy. Yoga is also known to be effective in treating not just upper and lower back pain- but also a host of other conditions such high blood pressure, depression and aches in various parts of the body. Do not perform movements such as touching your toes, leg lifts and other exercises which exert your back and abdominal muscles.

6) Get enough Vitamin D: Research indicates that a deficiency in Vitamin D causes chronic muscle pain. A 2005 study published by the British Medical Journal indicates that people with lower levels of Vitamin D are more prone to suffer from back pain. Exposure to sunlight facilitates the production of vitamin D in the body. Vitamin D is also present in milk (fortified) and fish – especially in fish which have small bones.  These sources, however, are often insufficient to meet the dietary requirements of vitamin D and in such a case you may opt for supplements.

7) Listen to music: Music therapy is one of the cheapest home remedies for back pain. The principle behind this technique is simple – it gives your mind something else to think of other than the pain. Soothing, calming music also reduces anxiety and depression – both of which commonly accompany chronic back pain. In addition to music therapy, meditation and hypnotherapy are also known to be effective in improving pain tolerance.

8) Don’t smoke: Smoking takes a serious toll on the body. Some of its adverse effects include atherosclerosis, decline in cardiac health, sexual dysfunction, asthma, respiratory problems, lung cancer and so on. However, did you know that smoking can also lead to muscle and joint pain? A study published by the American Journal of Medicine suggests that people who smoke are more like to suffer from back pain than those who don’t. Smoking decreases the lungs ability to absorb oxygen. It also affects the hearts ability to pump oxygenated blood to various parts of the body. Without proper supply of oxygen, the muscles and tissues in the body wear out faster.

9) Change your mattress: If your mattress has become old – it may no longer be suitable for providing enough support to your lower back. If you wake up every day with a back ache, then changing your mattress could address this issue.  Good mattress are well worth the investment because you sleep at least 5-6 hours a day everyday of your life on it.  A firm back supporting mattress helps you get up feeling well-rested and refreshed for the next day.  See our mattress reviews for excellent recommendations.

What If All Else Fails…

The home remedies mentioned above suffice in most cases.  If the pain severely affects your mobility and quality of life, however, then it is time to seek professional medical assistance immediately. A physiotherapist, chiropractor or an orthopedic doctor will aid you to eradicate not just the symptoms, but also the root cause of your back problem.

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