The latest studies show that over 80% of people have suffered from back pain at some point during their lives. In fact, this musculoskeletal disorder is incredibly prevalent at a global scale, ranking second only to headache, which is a long-standing leader in terms of spread.
Back pain affects both men and women of all ages, professions, and levels of income. Millions of pounds are spent every year on the treatment of low back pain that occurs far more often than upper back pain, with a big number of patients ending up on a surgery table even despite the generally poor results that usually last a short while.
However, people who have to fight low back pain have a decent range of options at their disposal, both traditional and alternative. If you are one of those who experience acute or chronic back pain, check out these 7 effective ways to manage this problem.
Causes Of Low Back Pain
There is a great many causes of low back pain that ranges from strains and disk injuries to abnormal spine curvatures and arthritis. Trying to wake up their inner doctor and figure out the cause of the back pain by themselves is the biggest mistake made by people. No doubt, Google can bring a heck of a lot of useful info right to your fingertips but it can’t make a diagnosis, hence just have no illusions about it.
Unless you are pretty much sure that your back pain is directly connected to your last workout session and stretched muscles or ligaments, seek professional help if the symptoms go away in a couple of days. Your doctor will conduct a physical examination and if needed, will perform an X-ray, ultrasound, CT scan, or another imaging test to identify the problem and determine the most effective treatment.
Remember that even though a sedative lifestyle and lack of physical activity do add to the development of musculoskeletal disorders and an uncomfortable office chair can easily be a trigger for back pain, there are a myriad of health problems that can be manifested through low back pain. For instance, it could be a kidney infection or a herniated disk you have no idea about. The bottom line is if your pain is persistent, forget so popular nowadays DIY solutions because you will just waste precious time. What’s more, if your problem is more severe than you think, self-diagnostic and self-medication can pose risk to your health.
Even acute back pain can last for several weeks negatively affecting all spheres of a person’s life – not only the majority of people can’t work but they also can’t sleep normally, not to mention chronic pain that often doesn’t go away for months. Needless to say, everyone is looking for a viable way to get rid of low back pain as soon as possible. Fortunately, modern medicine takes full advantage of innovative technologies and Low Level Laser Therapy is the prime example of how sophisticated devices help relieve pain. Numerous clinical studies have proved the efficacy of LLLT, which is a safe and non-invasive procedure, for treating different types of pain. It doesn’t only reduce the need for analgesic medication known for carrying a range of side-effects but also heals the source of inflammation or pain.
Originated in China more than 2,500 years ago, acupuncture is a great way to manage many health problems and also a successful go-to therapy for chronic low back pain. However, it usually provides short-term relief, meaning you have to find a competent licensed acupuncturist in your area and visit him or her regularly. Acupuncture can’t heal the cause of your pain whatever It is but it can make your life much easier, especially when combined with traditional therapy methods.
What started at the very end of the 19th century in the small office in Iowa, today is a well-developed and commonly used therapy that helps people to fight many disorders of the nervous and musculoskeletal systems. Chiropractic manipulations are provenly effective for the treatment of low back pain, therefore if you are lucky to have a great chiropractor in the neighborhood, safely pay him a visit.
Short for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation, TENS is a small battery-operated device that leverages the power of low voltage electric current to relieve pain. The truth is, there is no serious research that can prove the effectiveness of this method but many people who have tried it swear it works. Well, if anything, you can use it at home without a need to visit a doctor or alternative practitioner. Just a heads up, consult with your doctor whether or not it is safe for you to use this device (pacemaker or pregnancy, for instance, make it unsafe).
Biofeedback might seem like a new word but it has been around already for some 70 years, actually. An integrative technique often used by dedicated therapists to help patients cope with pain, it is based on various mental and relaxation exercises and even includes self-hypnosis practice. By and large, it is hardly an option for someone looking for quick pain relief.
Pain killers are an inseparable part of our life and, of course, the first thing that crosses our mind when we need relief from back pain. Well, it’s fine to take one of the over-the-counter medications such as Ibuprofen but you should know, pain killers can’t be used for more than four days in a row.
It’s hard to think of a more pleasant way to treat low back pain than having a massage. Wittiness aside, when performed by a professional, it can be a great option to get rid of pain, especially caused by stretched muscles and ligaments.
If you are not quite sure which of these seven ways can be your perfect fit, ask your doctor for advice. Certain changes in your lifestyle and diet can also help manage low back pain, therefore opting for healthy food and regular workouts suitable for your fitness level is definitely worth a shot.