Lower Back Pain Relief
Specific suggestions for the relief of lower back pain include alternating ice and heat, minimal bed rest, and exercise. Although most people recover within a few days, you should contact your healthcare provider if there is no noticeable difference after 72 hours of self-care. Other therapies for relieving back pain may need to be tried, such as interventional therapy, spinal manipulation, or acupuncture.
In most cases, lower back pain can be treated without surgery. Relief for lower back pain typically involves:
- Using pain medicine
- Reducing inflammation
- Restoring proper function and strength to the back
- Preventing recurrence of the injury.
Most people with back pain recover without residual functional loss. However, a healthcare provider should be consulted if there is no noticeable relief after 72 hours of self-care.
Specific suggestions for lower back pain relief include:
- Ice and heat
- Minimal bed rest
- Complementary and alternative methods
Although ice and heat (the use of cold and hot compresses) have never been scientifically proven to quickly resolve lower back pain, compresses may help reduce pain and inflammation and allow greater mobility for some individuals. As soon as possible following trauma, you should apply a cold pack or a cold compress (such as a bag of ice or bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a towel) to the tender spot several times a day for up to 20 minutes. After two to three days of cold treatment, people should then apply heat (such as a heating lamp or hot pad) for brief periods to relax muscles and increase blood flow. Warm baths may also help relax muscles. Avoid sleeping on a heating pad, which can cause burns and lead to additional tissue damage.