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Whether you’re an active adult or you sit in an office all day, lower back pain is something almost all of us will deal with at some point in our lives. In this post I’m going to share some of my home remedies for a sore back and hopefully share something that will provide others with some relief.
My Lower Back Pain Story
Chronic neck problems and back problems are frequently the result of a car accident or sports injury. In my case, I was in a car accident when I was 16. It’s amazing how many people I know share a similar story.
I wasn’t seriously injured in the accident. In fact, I thought I was just fine. I expected to be sore for a few days.
But a few days turned into a few weeks. Weeks gave way to months. Now, almost 10 years later, I still have pain in my lower back.
I’m pretty lucky in that I’m not usually in pain all day long. Normally it’s morning pain when I wake up that’s the worst.
Over the years though, I’ve managed to come up with some ways to help alleviate the pain while avoiding medication as much as possible.
My Home Remedies for a Sore Back
It’s no surprise that stretching helps alleviate pain and prevent pain recurrence. I stretch for a few minutes every morning when I wake up and a few minutes before I go to bed.
I also try to stretch throughout the day when the moment presents itself. Even if it’s just a quick toe-touch for 5 seconds, if you do it regularly throughout the day, it helps a lot.
There are lots of different stretches that can be done for back pain. Check out some of the ones at spine-health.com and see what works for you.
Also another no-brainer, strengthening the muscles that help to keep all the joints of your back in alignment can go a long way to alleviating back pain.
Core exercises that work your abdominal region can provide excellent results. Consider trying something like the 5-day ab workout – if your fitness level isn’t up to it, you can always par down the number of repetitions on any of the exercises.
3. Heating Pad or Hot Water Bottle
Sometimes, my lower back pain is so bad that I can barely move. In those cases, stretching and strengthening just aren’t an option.
When my back pain gets me totally laid up, I’ll lay on my stomach with a hot water bottle or heating pad on my lower back.
It’s important to take care when using a heating pad – they can cause burns if you don’t use them properly.
4. Take a Hot Shower
A hot shower can do wonders for the body. If the pain is so bad that you can’t stand up, a bath will work as well.
The only reason I don’t usually take a bath right away is because bathtubs generally don’t allow you to lie in a position that’s good for your back.
A hot shower can help relax the muscles all over your body which will reduce referred pain from your back into your extremities.
5. Get a Massage
It might not qualify as a ‘home’ remedy, but massages are a good way to deal with pain in the absence of medication.
I’m not talking about having your significant other rub your back for a few minutes. While that can be a relaxing and bonding experience, it can’t compare to a professionally trained massage therapist.
True massage therapists know the anatomy of the muscular system. They’ve been trained on how to work with the direction of muscle fibers and connective tissue to provide real benefits and pain relief.
Weird right? Well, just like mentholated creams help relieve pain, so can toothpaste if you’re in a pinch.
I usually keep creams at home, but in the past I’ve found myself without and used toothpaste instead. It actually works!
Toothpaste spread onto your back (you don’t need a lot) will give the same heating/cooling sensation you get from all those pain relief creams.
While most of us reach for the ibuprofen when back pain strikes, there are other options you can try in lieu of medicine.
My back pain is something I’ll likely have to live with for the rest of my life, but it doesn’t define me. And it doesn’t have to define you either.