As an adult, lower back pain is a common ailment, especially after a certain age. The cause of this pain however differentiates from person to person as the source of the pain can begin in the muscles, nerves, bones or even a combination of all the above.
The pain in the lower back can be a dull ache or even a sudden sharp pain. Even though this pain may be common, there are ways to help minimize and reduce the likelihood of the pain surfacing. Our Atlanta spine specialists have composed a list of helpful tips for back pain relief below:
Restful Night Sleep
Many wonder if it’s the mattress that makes the difference and sometimes the answer is, yes. If you find yourself tossing and turning every night and cannot get comfortable, then it may be time for a new medium-firm mattress. However, if your mattress is working for you, it may be the position in which you are sleeping so trying out a few different sleep positions may find you the relief you are looking for. When the body is well rested, the inflamed joints and strained muscles will finally get the rest that they need.
Be Mindful Of Posture
As many careers have you sitting for long periods of time, reminding yourself that posture is important can mean all the difference in lower back pain symptoms. If you slouch or sit for long periods of time lower back pain can worsen. Always sit with your shoulders back, feet on the floor as well as your back pressed against the back of the chair for support. If added support is needed, place a pillow between your lower back and the seat.
Regular Exercise Regime
The more you work the muscles, the stronger they will become. When the lower back begins to hurt many think that resting for long periods of time is best to avoid injury but the solution is actually the opposite. When lower back pain symptoms arise, give the back a day to rest and then begin some low-impact exercises to avoid weakening the muscles that support your back.
Implementing a stretching routine into your schedule is also another great tip as this will help stretch out the muscles and minimize the risk of them tightening causing increased pain. As the muscles grow stronger, think about adding in exercises such as walking, swimming, or even yoga to help strengthen those lower back and surrounding muscles.
Reaching that magic number can be difficult and if you feel like you have tried everything and can’t get there on your own, reaching out to a nutritionist or personal trainer may be your best option. Reaching that healthy weight is a long term commitment and having support and motivation are things you need to reach those goals. By reaching a healthy weight, your body will not carry around that extra weight that puts extra strain and stress on the body’s muscles and joints and will go a long way in preventing lower back pain.
Apply Heat and Cold
If an injury has occurred to the lower back, apply heat and ice to help reduce inflammation. This is done multiple times a day for periods of 30 minutes. The first few days of injury begin using an ice pack and then switch over to heat. If a heating pad if not an option that works well for you try a warm bath.
After resting and implementing exercise, medication may be the next step if all other have not shown success. Starting with over the counter medications such as anti-inflammatories or acetaminophen may be the best place to start. However, keep in mind that pain medications do not treat the condition they only mask the pain so consult with a doctor before beginning any medicine regime.
Our Atlanta spine specialists specialize in non-surgical approaches and minimally invasive techniques so if the above tips have not met your needs in solving your chronic lower back pain symptoms, contact us today to learn about other effective methods that can help alleviate that lower back pain.
To learn about all your options, call our office today for a consultation with one of our orthopedic doctors by dialing (404) 855-2141.