If you’ve thrown your back out, it’s time to hunt down the driver of your local collection truck. Don’t be tossing away your valuables all willy-nilly!
In all seriousness, back pain can be incredibly uncomfortable and potentially debilitating. Although you should consult a doctor about how to prevent this condition from interfering with your daily life, we are here to provide you with a list of at-home remedies that you can employ for less severe discomfort or for when the doc is out of town.
Ice, ice, baby
Cold therapy reduces inflammation in the joints, which is generally the cause of back pain. It also decreases the likelihood of muscle spasms by slowing down nerve impulses.
You’re in hot water now!
Heat therapy, in the form of warm baths, heating pads, hot water bottles, or heat raps, stimulates blood flow by dilating your blood vessels, thereby increasing the flow of oxygen and nutrients to your muscles.
Heat also encourages the soft tissue around the spine to stretch, which decreases stiffness and increases flexibility.
And if all that wasn’t enough, heat also relieves discomfort by stimulating the sensory receptors in the skin and decreasing transmissions of pain signals to the brain.
A core solution
Your core is the center of your body and the front anchor of your spine, which is why it needs to be well-developed to support the weight of your neck and back. Weak abdominal muscles are often the culprit in pain because they force your body to use other structures (such as your back muscles) to support your spine.
Catch some Z’s
According to a study published by Arthritis and Rheumatology, not getting enough sleep increases your sensitivity to pain and vice versa. You can try alleviating this vicious cycle by sleeping in the fetal position with a pillow between your knees.
Keep it movin’
Low impact activities such as yoga, swimming, and walking can be great for relieving discomfort not only because the release of endorphins naturally kills pain, but also because tightening back muscles can prevent future episodes of pain.