Don't Forget to Stretch!

Back pain, especially lower back pain, is a common experience shared by most people. When any type of back discomfort suddenly appears you want relief ASAP, especially for pain that radiates to other parts of the body like your thighs, shoulders and neck. Thankfully, there are some steps you can take to get the immediate relief you desire.

A Little Rest

Overused muscles need a little rest. Usually a good night’s sleep will relieve back pain stemming from overdoing it at the gym or roughhousing with the kids. Too much rest, however, is not a good thing since muscle weakness can set in, so stick with the good night’s sleep rule.

A Good Stretch

Tense hamstrings, quads, and hip flexors can result in pain that’s felt in the lower back, especially if you get back to your weekday exercises after taking a weekend off. Give yourself time to do some stretching and you should be fine.

Applying Ice

For immediate relief of back pain, ice can do the trick. Ice quickly reduces the inflammation often associated with back pain. Keep in mind that while an ice pack can take away the pain, it could be temporary relief if you’ve sustained a serious muscle strain, so you’ll have to repeat the application of ice throughout the day.

Heat Therapy

Heat can counter the effects of muscle spasms and related tightness that contributes to some forms of lower back pain. Use a heating pad to carefully control how much heat is applied to your back muscles. Warm gel packs, heat wraps, and a long soak in a nice, warm bath can also provide welcome relief.

OTC Medications

Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen (Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve) may offer relief that’s fairly quick. OTC medications are more effective when your back pain is mostly from inflammation placing pressure on nerves and joints.

Most instances of minor back pain result from strained muscles supporting the spine, meaning that any of the above remedies will likely be effective. However, if back pain lingers or becomes progressively worse, it’s time to see a spine surgeon in Beverly Hills to determine the source of the pain and develop a more effective treatment plan.

Learn more about treatment options for chronic back pain from Dr. Hyun Bae of The Spine Institute Center for Spinal Restoration. Dr. Bae can determine the cause of your back pain and help you identify the appropriate treatment for your condition and lifestyle.