Among people everywhere, back pain is cited as one of the most common chronic ailments. Estimates indicate that 60-80% of Americans will be affected by lower back pain during their lifetime, with 5-10% of these developing lifelong chronic back pain. Unfortunately, it is almost guaranteed that the life of you or someone you know is dramatically affected by back pain.
Despite the frequency of these chronic pains, methods for relief often appear relatively limited to pain medicines prescribed by a medical doctor. However, narcotic pain relievers often have life-threatening side effects and an addictive quality. Surgery is only effective in improving pain and overall functioning in a select few people who suffer from chronic back pain. There is still hope for that much-needed pain relief! Alternative and natural medicine offer many possible solutions for chronic back pain sufferers, including these five commonly overlooked remedies.
Strengthen Your Core
Although it may seem surprising, one of the best remedies for back pain is core strengthening exercises. The core area plays a critical role in supporting the spine and back. Weakness in these areas can exacerbate back pain because the muscles strain and compensate throughout the day. Grab an exercise ball and start with a brief routine of planks, rows, and toe touches. Increase the repetitions slowly, choosing exercises that require pain-free movement of your affected area. Core routines can cause some initial soreness, but the strengthening effect reduces long-term pain.
Consider Physical Therapy
For people with recent injuries or severe pain areas, core strengthening can still be achieved under the guidance of a physical therapist. Physical therapy aims to improve muscle strength and flexibility, which is beneficial for individuals who suffer from muscle weakness due to severe injuries. The physical therapist leads you in exercises that are appropriate for your injury and monitors pain levels to ensure that the exercise program is safe.
Apply A Homeopathic Cream
Pain often strikes during long trips or busy work days, and natural topical analgesics can provide much-needed immediate relief without unwanted side effects. Several homeopathic products exist over-the-counter, including Sombra Therapy Gels and Topricin Natural Pain Relief creams. These natural remedies are available in creams, lotions, and gels. They absorb onto the painful area, are gentle on the skin, and can be used as often as needed with no detrimental side effects.
Get A Massage
Another natural remedy is soft tissue therapies, which are not only enjoyable; they can dramatically increase blood flow and relaxation of muscles in the back. Massage therapists that are familiar with back injuries can be found at chain therapy centers or local pain relieving clinics. They are experts in treating the underlying causes of back pain, such as poor posture and muscle weakness. Although this remedy carries more cost, some massage therapy sessions may be covered by medical insurance as a natural form of treatment.
Soothe it With Heat
A simple, final tip for relieving back pain naturally is to use heat therapy. Heat is typically recommended over cold therapy for chronic back pain because it can be used as much as needed to relax the muscles and restore circulation. Natural heat therapy is available in the form of heating pads, wraps, hot baths, and hot water bottles, so it is important to discover which method works best for your lifestyle. Use heat therapy right before bed, right after you wake up, or while stationary for long periods of time to provide the longest lasting natural relief.