Back pain is classified as one of the top most debilitating types of pain affecting the human body. Because of the close proximity of so many major muscle groups to the spine, back pain can seriously affect your ability to perform basic day to day functions.
Chronic back pain sufferers will find that their medical doctor will immediately treat the symptoms with pain and inflammatory reducing medication in order to try and pinpoint the exact causes of the pain itself. But, people who continue to treat only the symptoms, and do not find the root of where the pain is coming from can expect a long relationship with painkillers alternating with painful symptoms in a never ending circle.
1. Prevention is Better than Cure
The old saying of if you look after your body your body will look after you, has never rung more true than when it comes to your back. Looking after your body and your spine will help by making you stronger, therefore being less prone to injuries and back pain.
If you sit behind a computer desk all day, make sure that you have a good chair, one that will look after your spine and lower back as well as your posture. Make sure that you move around a lot, take breaks frequently and do some exercise every single day.
Yoga, Pilates and walking are excellent non-impact exercise forms that will make your body strong without having to put any strain on joints or old injuries. And in the event that you are injured, your body will bounce back quicker, having been stronger in the first place.
Take care when picking up any heavy items – take note of how you bend, where you bend from and what part of your body you are using to stand back up with. If your stomach muscles are not strong enough to support you, you will end up putting extra strain on your lower back and a simple move like picking up a small box or bag of groceries can put your back right out for weeks.
2. Acupressure Massage
Acupressure uses the same concept and pressure points as acupuncture does, only the massage is performed without the use of needles. The idea behind using acupressure as a means of massage is to release tension that has built up in the various points of the body, helping to ease pain and reduce tightness in tender areas of the body.
Stress, bad posture, sitting badly in an uncomfortable chair and a restless night of sleep all lead to strain on the body. Regular massage will help to relieve the uncomfortable symptoms – but in order to get permanent relief, the reasons why you are perpetually in pain needs to be addressed and the necessary changes made.
Many people may think this is something only athletes or ballet dancers are required to do, but if you take a good leaf out of your cat or dog’s book every time they get up from lying (sleeping) in one position for any amount of time – they stretch first. And if a cat or dog stretches in one direction, they stretch in the opposite one as well.
Basic rules of Pilates and Yoga dictate that if you perform a move or stretch on one side of the body, you should always repeat it on the other side as well. Make a point of stretching gently every morning when you get up, every time after you shower or bath when your muscles are nice and warm, and before and after you exercise. You will get some blood rushing to the area and the moves will go a long way in preventing stiff and tired muscles from causing pain later on.
Gentle stretching doesn’t involve painful moves; only move to as far as you can until you feel the stretch – don’t hurt yourself. It’s not about range, it’s about muscle release.
Dehydration is one of the most unknown causes of muscle tension and pain. Our bodies consist of 75% water and need to get at least 2 liters of water a day just to allow us to function normally. When our muscles are tired and sore you may find that they are dehydrated which is partly what has caused them to spasm in the first place.
Increase your water intake every day and keep a bottle in your car, on your desk and in your bag and get into the habit of drinking more water on a daily basis. Your skin will love you for it and your back muscles will start giving you less hassles as well.