All About Back Pain And Prevention

Many different things cause back pain — muscle strain, muscle spasm, ligament sprains, slipped disc, joint problems, or other medical conditions. If you suffer from back pain, it’s important that you learn all about back pain, the causes, the symptoms, and the treatment alternatives. This can help in prevention and knowing how to remedy the symptoms when/if they do flare up.

Sometimes you don’t realize you’ve injured your back until you feel the pain. The most common causes of back pain are moving or lifting heavy objects, doing yard work, or other activities that are outside of the norm for you and your body.

How to Relieve Back Pain

If you want to try home methods before seeking medical attention, you can try a few different things.

A few days rest and/or over-the-counter medication can help relieve your back pain. Nonprescription medications that help reduce swelling and pain include aspirin, acetaminophen, naproxen, ketoprofen, and ibuprofen.

Heating pads can help relax muscle spasms. Using heat for 20 to 30 minutes may provide some relief. Ice packs may also help relieve the pain.

One of the best positions for relief of back pain is lying on your back on the floor with pillows under your needs. Your hips and knees should be bent, and your feet should be positioned on a chair. This helps take the weight and pressure off your back, offering relief to the area.

Preventing back pain

We all know that prevention is the best cure, so here are a few tips to help prevent back strain/injuries.

Never lift bending over. You should bend at your knees and squat when picking up objects. Your back should be straight with the object held close to your body. You should also avoid twisting while you are lifting objects. This is the easiest way to cause injury.

You should push objects rather than pull whenever possible. Pulling heavy objects can strain and even tear muscles and ligaments.

If you are required to sit for long periods of time such as at a desk or an occupation driving for hours at a time, you should take breaks to stretch. This prevents your muscles from tightening up.

When it is time to call the doctor

When most of us develop back pain, we don’t immediately call the doctor; first, we try rest and over the counter medications to see if the pain doesn’t subside. Sometimes it is necessary to be seen by a physician when the pain worsens and/or will not go away. Here are some signs/symptoms to let you know when it’s time to call the doctor:

Pain that goes down your leg below your knee.
Fever, nausea, vomiting; stomachache, sweating, or weakness.

Numbness in your legs, feet, groin, or rectal area.
Intense debilitating pain that prevents movement.
Pain that does not get better after a couple of weeks.
Loss of bowel/bladder control.

Of course, if you suffer an accident or injury, you should not wait to call your physician.

Relief for Ongoing Back Pain

If you suffer from ongoing back problems, first you must determine the cause. Sometimes your problem may not be medical, but your lifestyle. You may be required to lose weight, exercise more, or change your eating habits. Only your physician can assess your back pain and offer treatment recommendations. Don’t take it upon yourself to self-diagnosis if you have ongoing pain. This could lead to further damage or even permanent problems.

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