4 Ways to Get Rid Of That Pain In Your Back
Are you desperately looking for ways to get rid of that aching pain in your back?
Most everyone has experienced the back pain caused by a pulled muscle at some time. In fact, the National Institutes of Health indicates that approximately 8 out of every 10 people will suffer from this type of pain during their lifetime.
It can happen while playing your favorite sport, taking care of yard work, or even bending to pick up your keys that you dropped on the floor. But it can also be due to daily habits such as hefty around a heavy purse, or hunching over your smartphone.
Even the simplest of tasks can over-stretch your muscles, resulting in small tears, which can cause a lot of pain.
But while this sudden pain can come on quite unexpectedly, there are some important warning signs that you should always pay attention to.
Having a pulled muscle in your back may not seem like a serious injury, but for many, particularly those with lower back pain, it can become quite intense and almost unbearable.
And while you may recover from a pulled back muscle, it’s entirely possible that this pain-free bliss could turn into a repeat occurrence.
Daily Habits Can Greatly Increase Your Chances of Re-injury
Think about it…
Do you sit for long periods of time daily?
Do you feel that you are consistently under a significant amount of stress?
Do you exercise, and if so, are you performing these movements properly?
Do you drink enough water each day to be adequately hydrated?
Does your body weight fall within the range of “overweight” or “morbidly obese”?
Be honest, did you responded “yes” to any of these questions? If so, then a lifestyle change is the intervention needed to decrease your risk of recurring pain and further injuries, such as a pulled back muscle.
4 Important Steps Toward a Speedy Recovery
Fortunately, most will find that the muscles will heal within a few days or weeks, and life without back pain can resume.
The first instinct for anyone who experiences sudden, unexpected back pain is to reach for the medicine cabinet. There are plenty of over-the-counter medications that offer to ease your suffering. Just pop a couple of pain relievers and have a rest, and you’ll feel better in no time, right?
But there are other things that may be more safe and effective.
FIRST: Hit the Ice
The chill stimulates your body to start the process of healing the injury, as well as cause constriction of the blood vessels in the area which will help minimize the pain and swelling.
Applying an ice pack to your injured muscles, and the sooner, the better.
If you don’t have an ice pack, just fill a plastic zip-top baggie or a bag of frozen veggies will do the trick.
Just wrap it in a thin towel and massage the area in a constant, circular motion, up to 20 minutes at a time.
SECOND: Turn Up the Heat
After the 20 minute chill, follow-up with 20 minutes of heat.
You can repeat this process up to three time to provide relief from your back pain.
Your muscles will relax and your circulation will increase as the warmth causes the area to return to normal temperature.
To heat things up, enjoy a hot shower, a heating pad, or even medicated creams that are designed to give penetrating comfort.
For the deepest heat penetration, try an infrared heating pad, which offers more than the standard heating pad.
THIRD: Give It Just A Little Rest
Giving your body a break from activity for a short period of time is okay, according to your level of pain.
But experts say that the key to a speedy recovery is actually light activity.
In general, avoid repeating the activity that caused your injury for at least a week (no heavy lifting, for example).
FOURTH: Stretch It Out
After a couple of days, a bit of light stretching can often reduce the pain and tension from a pulled muscle.
An easy way to stretch and strengthen your back while lying in bed is to gently raise your knees to your chest. A great way to get a light stretch in your lower back is to use slight pressure as you are pulling your knees toward your chest. However, it should not cause pain, so don’t overdo it.
Back Pain Prevention
By taking some simple steps toward maintaining good habits, you can avoid debilitating back pain.
Maintain a healthy diet. Avoid inflammatory foods, such as processed and sugary foods and beverages. Sodas and fast foods cause inflammation in your body, making you more pain-sensitive.
Instead, maintain a healthy diet that includes fresh fruits and vegetables. Eat plenty of foods, such as salmon and walnuts, that contain pain relieving Omega-3 fatty acids. Protein-rich foods will help build and strengthen your muscles, and repair damaged tissues, and always drink plenty of water to stay hydrated.
Relax. Constant stress and tension results in tight muscles. If you’re like many, it’s easy to pinpoint your anxiety found often in your neck and shoulders, as well as your jaw muscles.
The quickest fix for this is massage. Meditation, or just spending 10 minutes focusing on being still, breathing deeply and calming your thoughts is also an effective way to relax after a stressful day.
Check your posture. Whether you find yourself seated at a desk, in your car, or on your couch, getting the proper support is key to reducing the pressure that can build up from sitting in slouched positions.
And by improving your posture, you can relieve the strain often put on your back muscles, which makes you more prone to a pulled back muscle.
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