How to Deal With Lower Back Pain

Aches and pains seem to be one of those unavoidable parts of getting older. Everything that once seemed to form part of a well-oiled machine starts creaking and getting stuck, and most of us find that we can’t move in the way we used to once upon a time. While this is true in part, that doesn’t mean we should simply accept these aches and pains and pretend they’re not there. Often, there are things we can do to ease our pain and work at managing it and if we can determine a root cause, we may even be able to eliminate these pains completely. Our lower backs are one of those areas that tend to cause a lot of problems, but there are a lot of solutions to take into considerations. Here are some ways you could try dealing with your lower back pain. 

How to Deal With Lower Back Pain
[image: pexels by elina fairytale]

Change How You Sleep 

If you wake up each morning with a sore back, feeling stiff and tight and achy, your sleeping might be the cause of your problems. Aged and unsupportive mattresses and pillows are huge culprits when it comes to back and neck pain, so take a look at what you’re using and consider if it might be time for an upgrade. Don’t simply jump into a new purchase, though! These items can be extremely personal, and it’s a good idea to do some research and find out what type of mattress might be best for you. Read up on memory foam vs spring mattresses and consider how you sleep and where your pain lies – all these factors and more can play a role. 

Optimise Your Office 

Most of us spend a fair few hours of our days seated at a desk in front of a computer screen, and then we wonder why we struggle with back and neck issues on top of eye strain. This lifestyle is sometimes unavoidable but that doesn’t mean it’s good for us; we should be doing everything in our power to improve the overall impact these hours have on our bodies. Some things you can do are to opt for a desk chair with good lower back support, raise your screen to eye level and make a habit of getting up, stretching and moving around once every hour or two. This can all really help ease stress on your back and alleviate your pain. 

Exercise 

This may seem counter-productive since many people tend to actually acquire back injuries through exercising, but this doesn’t mean that working out is the problem here. It’s simply a case of doing the right kinds of exercises suited to your body and fitness levels, and doing these exercises with the correct form and intensity. If you already struggle with back issues or joint pain, then high-impact activities like HIIT and running might rather be avoided. However, low-impact, strength-based exercises like pilates, lifting weights and swimming could be good options. These activities will help to strengthen your muscles in your back and the rest of your body, offering better support and less strain. 

Stretch Regularly 

Especially if you’re implementing exercise into your weekly routine, stretching is crucial. Keeping your muscles loose, warm and flexible forms an important part of the health in your muscles and joints and this will be beneficial for your spinal health too. Slow, gentle stretching can help to ease tension and increasing your flexibility over time could help improve long-term pains and problems. A good idea might be to try out some gentle yoga practices, since this can help you to get stronger and more flexible while taking care of your back. 

See a Professional 

If you know that you’re implementing the most important steps in your lifestyle and still struggling to manage your back pain by yourself, it might be time to visit a professional. A chiropractor, physiotherapist or orthopaedist will be able to assist you with severe or ongoing pains that you might not be able to ease with home remedies. Initially, you should see your general practitioner to ask their opinion and ask them to refer you to one of these specialists if they think it might be necessary. If the pain is ongoing, it’s probably best to address the root cause of the problem rather than simply treating the pain with anti-inflammatory medication or ointments. However, keep in mind that prevention is always better than cure, and you should be mindful of your posture and back health at all times, in order to avoid future problems. 

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