If your back is giving you problems, you are in good company. Approximately 80 percent of people will have back pain at one point in their life or another. The type of pain often varies, ranging from a quick, sharp pain to a lingering ache. It is often the result of an injury, but back pain can also occur due to a medical condition as well. If you find yourself in this situation, take heart; with the right care, your back should improve substantially. The following tips will help you figure out how to ease your symptoms and keep them at bay in the future.
Most people that experience back pain tend to try and move as little as possible, hoping that inactivity will ease their symptoms. While that’s not a bad idea for the first 24 hours after your pain surfaces, sitting around any longer than that is just going to get in the way of your regular lifestyle. Getting up and moving, like by going on a walk, can help your muscles relax and even cut down on the amount of inflammation you are experiencing.
Smoking inhibits the amount of blood that can get to your spinal discs. Therefore, many smokers report feeling back pain, and their symptoms typically begin to fade once they put their cigarettes down for good. In addition, there are a number of other health benefits associated with quitting. If you want to stop, but you aren’t sure where to begin, talk to your primary care physician. He or she should have some advice that will help.
Sleep on your side
Are you currently a stomach or back sleeper? You may gain some relief by switching to your side and pulling your knees up toward your stomach. Talk to your doctor about your options; depending on where your pain is localized, they may have a different suggestion for you. You can also sleep on your back if you place a few pillows in strategic locations, like under your lower back, but sleeping on your stomach should generally be avoided.
Focus on your posture
If you work in an office, and you have a fairly sedentary existence, you may want to invest in a good chair to help prevent back pain. You want to look for something that has a straight back or includes support for your lower back. It is important that your knees are raised just above your hips when you are in a seated position. If you can’t make this happen naturally, simply get a small stool to put your feet on. While it may feel awkward at first, you will quickly get used to sitting with better posture and you should notice the effects from your change pretty quickly.
Back pain should be taken very seriously. While a visit to the doctor may be necessary, there are things that you can do at home to ease your symptoms as well. By making small alterations to your lifestyle, you can live a more pain-free existence.