At-home treatments for back pain
Back pain is the worst! We never feel like we can go about our day properly or even feel like we are stuck in bed. Most of the time back pain is due to stress and tension in the body that is placing focus on your back. Our back is so much stronger than we give it credit for. It is used for every movement every day. Let’s keep our back strong and healthy with everyday care.
15-30 Minutes of daily stretching can decrease the pain significantly. Now, this stretch needs to be relaxing and smooth. Don’t rush the movements and slowly come in and out of each pose. Keep your mind focused on how each pose feels. Ask yourself where you feel the tension, is one side tighter than the other, am I able to take deep breaths in each pose? With every deep breath allow your muscles to relax and sink deeper into the pose. Never going more than 75%. If at any time you feel burning or tingling, adjust the pose to your comfort using pillows or blankets to support yourself.
Ice and Heat can help ease back pain. It is best to start with ice allowing blood flow to circulate away from the area and open the flow to new blood flow and oxygen. Ice the area for a minimum of 10 minutes maximum 20-minute or until the area is numb. You may use a bag of ice, a gel ice pack, or sit in a tub of cold/ice water. A great time to do a stretch would be after icing the area. A proper stretch using only gravity and body weight is required. Follow the stretching tips above.
After you ice the area and if you wish to stretch, you may apply heat to the area for maximum 10-15minutes using a heat pack that can be plugged in, a wheat/rice pack that can be heated up in a microwave, sitting in a hot tub/ bath or allowing the shower to hit your back. Allow the area to become red this means there has been enough time for new oxygen to the area. Oxygen is key to rejuvenating your nerves and helping with pain.
- Drink water
Remember to drink plenty of water EVERY DAY. We can get into a busy schedule and fall short of the amount of water to drink. Before your morning coffee have a glass of water, before reaching for any other drink, think to yourself have I had enough water? When you are getting a drink always think to have a glass of water first then the choice of something different. There are liquid IVs that can be drunk at home, but this is not recommended due to the amount of sugar or other ingredients that may be in a liquid IV. Plain water is just fine or for taste and benefit, you may add a lemon slice.
Did you know that simply just taking the time to relax, be still and quiet and allow your mind to be still or think about what you’re grateful for can help reduce back pain? Stress can be a physical thing, but mental stress can be just as harmful to our bodies as lifting weights. Holding in emotions and thoughts for any reason can stay in your body and become a physical issue. Take the time once a week to journal, listen to a guided meditation, or sit outside thinking about your feelings and thoughts.
- Core work-out
You may be thinking what does working my abs have to do with my back? Well did you know you should be using your core to stand up straight, sit down, and hold yourself up when bent over? Only using your back in these movements may be the reason you are in pain. You don’t need a six-pack to use your abs. Think about tightening your core, pulling your belly button toward your spine, and not sucking in. You still want to have the ability to breath normal. If you are unable to breathe normally you are engaging your core the wrong way.
Here are some core workouts when you have back pain.
Much like meditation going for a 10-minute walk can help destress and move the body. If you are someone that sits at a desk or is in a car all day. You may not be moving or able to be outside as much as your body needs. This walk can be done at the beginning or the end of the day, on your lunch break, or spread out throughout the day. For a great weekend, activity plans a new walking trail nearby that you may enjoy with family and friends.
Simple and sweet. Sometimes you just need to know when to give your body a rest. Little movement, plenty of water, little to no alcohol or caffeine, and lots of fresh air.