Many people experience back pain as the result of strenuous exercise, poor posture, a chronic condition, or an accumulation of physical stressors. Back pain can pose as an inconvenience to daily routine and can make favorite and necessary activities painful. Back pain is one of the most common reasons people seek medical help or miss work. Back pain is a leading cause of disability worldwide. Fortunately, there are several best approaches to managing your pain that you can achieve in the comfort of your own home.
Five Drug-Free Options to Treat Back Pain
Prep for Better Sleep
The quality of our sleep is highly influential to our physical wellbeing. When experiencing back pain, you may find it difficult to sleep. Back pain can enter an unfavorable cycle with sleep, in that poor sleep may lead to greater back pain and vice versa.
There are sleeping positions that are unfavorable to your spine’s alignment and can contribute to the pain. Try resting on your side with a pillow between your knees to alleviate back strain. If you are prone to sleeping on your back, replace your old mattress for one that is firm and flat.
Though bed rest was once prescribed for back pain, excess rest is now known to worsen your condition. You can avoid sedentary days by implementing physical therapy into your schedule.
Physical therapists utilize an arsenal of strength and stretching exercises to help their patients manage chronic and temporary pain or soreness. Typical physical therapy routines vary on a case-by-case basis to best suit a patient’s needs and goals.
With more people working from home due to the pandemic, there is a high demand for at-home ergonomic spaces. Poor posture while working, reading, or watching TV can aggravate back pain.
Encourage good posture by equipping your workstations with tools that prompt a straightened back. You can place a pillow or rolled towel between your back and seat to help achieve better posture.
Stand smart. Don’t slouch. Maintain a neutral pelvic position. When standing for long periods, place one foot on a low footstool to take some of the load off the lower back. Alternate feet. Good posture can reduce the stress on back muscles.
Sit smart. Choose a seat with good lower back support, armrests and a swivel base. Placing a pillow or rolled towel in the small of the back can maintain its normal curve. Keep knees and hips level. Change position frequently, at least every half-hour.
Fluctuate Between Heat and Ice
Heat and ice are popular options for temporarily relieving pain. Which of the two is better for you depends on whatever you prefer. It is recommended to try both, as each could be used for differing types of pain.
Heat is best for relaxing stiff or tight muscles, while ice helps reduce inflammation. Avoid utilizing heat or ice on areas that already have muscle-ache ointments applied to them.
Yes, talk therapy! It may seem off-putting for a physical ailment such as back pain but talk therapy is one of the best approaches to manage back pain. Talk therapy can help you process any understated emotions that back pain has burdened you with. Talking through life’s obstacles with a licensed professional can improve several facets of your wellbeing, both physical and mental.
Be Aware of Product Claims
Because back pain is common, many products promise prevention or relief. But there’s no good evidence that special shoes, shoe inserts, back supports or specially designed furniture can help. In addition, there doesn’t appear to be one type of mattress that’s best for people with back pain. It’s probably a matter of what feels most comfortable.
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