Back pain is so common that one in six Australians claims to have it, and four out of five people will experience it at some point in their lives. In the majority of these cases, pain in the back is caused by strains in the muscles, tendons or ligaments. We find that a transition to a healthier lifestyle, which includes losing weight, improving muscle mass and tone and increasing strength, is the most effective way to relieve back pain.
Understanding Back Pain
Your back is a complex system of components that need to work together. Back pain is typically grouped into lower back pain and upper back pain, depending on where it is experienced.
People experience the pain differently, ranging from aching, spasms, tingling and numbness to stiffness and loss of mobility. Understanding what triggered your back pain is a helpful starting point for back pain relief and knowing what treatment to adopt.
Having chronic back pain also affects your mental state as being in a constant state of pain can make you feel short-tempered and easily upset.
What Causes Back Pain?
If you look at the anatomy of the back, it is made up of 24 vertebrae. The vertebrae are separated by discs and held together by joints. Muscles and ligaments keep your spine together, giving you the support you need to move.
It is possible for the pain to emanate from any of these structures, but in the majority of cases, the pain tends to be unspecified and self resolves within a period of time. In general, most back pain can be related to:
- Poor ergonomics, especially when sitting
- Muscle spasms or strains
- Weak back or abdominal muscles
- Lack of physical fitness
- Too much sitting, which places the spine under pressure
- Inflammatory responses
- Carrying too much extra weight
What To Do For Back Pain Relief?
Physical exercise is important to maintain, even if you have back pain. It keeps your blood circulating, which is especially helpful if you have an injury. It also builds and tones your muscles and ligaments, which makes them more difficult to injure. Over the medium term, the right exercises can provide you with back pain relief.
Seeing a physiotherapist can help you to modify a work out to minimise injury but keep your strength and fitness up. A physiotherapist will also help you with the exercises so that you perform them safely and avoid injury where possible.
Try Topical Products
There is a range of products to relieve back pain, which can be applied topically to the skin. Some of them are cooling, while others provide warmth and heat. Patients who experience osteoarthritis may find them beneficial. Sometimes a cold or warm compress can help to relieve back pain.
Losing weight just gives your back less work to do on a daily basis. If your muscles or ligaments are sprained or strained, you can help them out by giving them less weight to manage.
If you need professional advice on how to relieve back pain, we can assist you with a management program. Please contact us for assistance with back pain relief: (07) 5613 1531.