This article is part of a series on Back Pain. Check out the other articles below:
- Understanding Lower Back Pain
- Long Term Impacts of Ignoring Back Pain
- The Role of Nutrition in Treating Lower Back Pain
Here are some ways to work on managing your pain (without pill popping).
Use a foam roller for a Myofascial release
The foam roller can be used for a deep tissue massage which you can give yourself. The roller makes it easy to apply a lot of pressure evenly to roll out high amounts of tension.
You can give yourself a Myofascial massage on the lower back by lying down with the foam roller in the middle of your back horizontally under your neck. Now roll your self up and down till the butt is on the roller, going intentionally slower towards the bottom to evenly distribute the pressure. Pause at tender areas and move extremely slowly in the spot for 30-60 seconds.
Use heat and/or cold compression
The therapeutic powers of regularly applying cold packs and/or hot packs to support the body’s healing capacities should not be underestimated.
Cold application works by reducing inflammation, which is usually a culprit in any type of back pain. It also acts as a local anesthetic by slowing down nerve impulses, which takes the edge off the nerve spasms.
Heat application works in the opposite way, by stimulating blood flow and bringing oxygen and healing nutrients to the point of injury. It then inhibits the pain messages being sent to the brain reducing the overall sensation of pain.
Sleep to activate your body’s fight mode
Sleep activates the body’s restorative powers, but your back pain maybe the reason sleep maybe beyond grasp. And paradoxically, inadequate sleep will make the back pain worse. Tire yourself mentally by reading extensively or keeping your brain engaged. Then work on your body with low impact exercises to exhaust your body of any energy and make sleep the only option. Practice making your sleep zone a no technology zone, maintain optimal temperatures for sleep and low lighting. Teas without caffeine and warm showers before bed have also been proven to help.
Set mental reminders to correct your posture
A bad posture maybe contributing to your back pain, so now maybe the time to stand up straight and take a stand against your pain. Good posture is having a slight inward curve on the lower back, slightly outward on the upper back and inward again at the neck. Like a less extreme S. Pull back your shoulders if you have a tendency to slouch. And avoid carrying bags that weigh more than 10% of your weight on an everyday basis. And when you do, alternate shoulders and put it down often to give your body a break.