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Treating Back Pains Can Begin at Home

May 14, 2008
Back pain is a pervasive problem among Americans aged 45-65 years. In fact, it afflicts 65 million of us at some point. The good news is that back pain is not often caused by anything life threatening, and it can often be treated at home without a doctor visit.

The general goal is to relieve the pinching of nerves in the spinal cord, the most frequent cause of back pain. The first action to take when back pain flares up is to rest for a little while. Find a comfortable position and get off your feet but not for too long. A little rest can go a long way, followed by gentle movement and stretching. There are also medications that help. Try over-the-counter anti-inflammatories and muscle relaxants first.

Applying heat or cold will also provide help. Cold is especially good for back injuries, such as sprains and strains. Cold packs, ice packs, cold compresses, and cool baths can reduce inflammation, halt spasms, and ease pain. Hot baths, heating pads, and warm compresses are relaxing to muscles and can help bring back flexibility. If you are confused about which to use, try both and continue whichever feels better.

Another good way to relieve back pain and stiffness is through massage. Massage provides all sorts of benefits. It eases tension, stops muscle spasms, helps with inflammation, loosens stiff muscles, and can relieve pain. Massage is also excellent for restoring motion. You can see a professional for massage therapy, or you can remain at home and use a hand-held massaging tool. Another super option is a massage chair. Massage chairs feel incredible, and you never have to lift a finger-just sit back and enjoy!

If you have tried everything and get no relief, or if flare ups arise more often or endure longer or become debilitating, it is time to consult your doctor to identify the cause of the pain and treat it more seriously with prescription medications or physical therapy. Rarely is there a truly critical cause for back pain, and only nine out of ten patients need surgery.
About the Author
If you're looking for effective ways of treating back pain at home, make sure you look into reputable back pain therapies.
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