Back pain is an unfortunate fact of life for over 31 million Americans. And it doesn’t matter if the root cause of your pain is injury, aging, lifestyle, or a known health condition — you want it to stop.
At Balance Wellspace, we understand. Our experienced care providers help people in Roanoke, Virginia, and Denver, Colorado, say goodbye to back pain for good. We’ve curated our favorite five ways you can help ease your back pain. Read on to learn more.
1. Apply ice and heat
As simple as it sounds, applying heat or cold packs can have a significant impact on improving chronic back pain. Cold packs help reduce inflammation while applying heat helps tight, sore muscles relax. The result? A happier back.
Be sure you don’t place cold packs directly on your skin, and try icing on and off for 20 minutes. You can alternate between hot and cold packs for optimal relief.
2. Pain medication
If you’re suffering from back pain, different kinds of pain medication can be useful short-term tools to help you get through the day. Anti-inflammatory drugs, muscle relaxants, and other medications aren’t intended for long-term use, because these medications only mask your pain rather than cure it. Discuss any medication use with your provider.
3. Practice good posture
Most adults haven’t thought about their posture since they were kids and mom nagged them to stand or sit up straight. But posture is key to your overall health — especially the health of your spine.
Many body systems that play an integral role in your well-being are affected by your posture, good or bad. When you practice good posture, the muscles surrounding your spine distribute the support of your body equally. With bad posture, different areas are strained more than others, leading to pain, slipped discs, and even nerve damage.
As you sit, keep your back straight and your feet flat on the floor. Your weight should be distributed equally to both hips. Keep your head straight, not leaning forward, and your shoulders back but relaxed. When standing, follow the same guidelines but keep your weight evenly distributed on both feet instead of your hips.
4. Light physical activity
While your back pain can make you feel like staying in bed, staying physically active is an important step in managing back pain. Light physical activity helps increase blood flow, strengthen muscles for better support, and alleviate your pain. In fact, doctors now believe long-term rest actually exacerbates an achy back.
Try activities like walking and swimming, gentle stretching, and core-strengthening exercises. A strong core can help stop back pain from returning in the future. As your flexibility, strength, and endurance improve, your back pain will fade away.
5. Chiropractic treatment
Chiropractic treatment for back pain is a natural approach that doesn’t rely on medication or invasive procedures to provide relief. At Balance Wellspace, our team provides you with a physical evaluation and X-rays, if necessary, to get to the root cause of your pain.
Once we know why you’re in pain, we perform spinal manipulations and adjustments to realign your spine and alleviate your back pain. We also discuss important steps you can take to reduce the risk of developing more back pain in the future.
Which treatment option is right for me?
Before deciding on a specific treatment, meet with our team to discuss which options might work best for you. A combination of at-home care and in-office services often works best. Your care provider at Balance Wellspace evaluates your specific symptoms to help determine the cause of your pain, then works with you to create a treatment plan customized for you.