Lower back pain is very common, with most episodes being acute, meaning lasting less than 3 months. There are many causes of lower back pain including: muscles, pinched nerves, joint strains, disc injuries, arthritis and many more. It always pays to get it checked out to rule out any nasty causes. There are simple ways you can treat back pain, these include:
Remaining active- Spending the day on the couch can actually do more harm than good. Staying active can help 'flush' away inflammation, promote blood flow and keep the muscles moving rather than stiffening up. Gentle movement is best and strenous activites are to be avoid. If you need to rest make sure every 20 minutes you get up and do a short walk around the house.
Heat or ice- This depends on the tissue involved. If it is a muscle strain ice may be more effective. As ligaments have a poor blood supply, heat would be beneficial to encourage blood flow to the injured area.
Avoid activities that aggravate your pain- General movement is encouraged but if there are particular movements or positions that aggravate the pain, avoid them until the injury is recovered. Of course this is where possible. Try altering the position or movement so it can be achieved in a less or pain free manor. For example if sleeping on your side is painful, try a pillow between your knee's.
Trying to get a good nights sleep- Whilst this may be very challenging, a good nights sleep lets your body rest and recover.
Analgesics- This may include things like Nurofen and Panadol. See your pharmacist and ask for what they recommend for you.
Seek treatment- Back pain generally resolves faster when treatment is given earlier, rather than dealing with the pain for a few weeks first.
Osteopathy can be very beneficial to back pain. Treatment is specific to the patient, aiming to relieve the pain and identify what caused it. Tailored advice is given to the patient to ensure a fast recovery. Osteopaths are ACC providers so all accidental injuries can be charged under ACC.
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