Most adults experience back pain every now and then. You may have experienced a sharp pain in your back after sitting in one position for a long period or after lifting a heavy object suddenly.
While the first is usually as a result of bad posture, the later is due to strain on the muscles that support the back.
Whatever the cause, back pain is uncomfortable and we all want fast relief in order to get on with our daily activities pain free.
This article outlines a number of measures you can take to relieve back pain fast.
Taking a simple painkiller like paracetamol can help reduce and even eliminate the pain. You should take them when you feel you need them and at the recommended dose. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can help. There are also some anti-inflammatory gels and creams that can also help if applied to the painful area.
Use a heat/ice pack
You can apply a heat or ice pack to the area of pain to increase circulation and reduce pain and stiffness. Heat and ice packs are easily accessible in chemists and gym stores. However, you can improvise by taking a warm bath or using a pack of frozen food.
Before using the heat or ice pack, wrap it with a towel or thick cotton cloth to protect your skin from damage due to direct contact with the pack.
Get a massage
Sometimes a good massage is all you need to make back pain ancient history.
Massage can release tension and fatigue in muscles, reduce anxiety and stress levels and improve circulation all of which contribute to pain reduction.
Do back stretching and strengthening exercises
Active exercises distribute nutrients into the joints and soft tissues in the back. Back stretching and strengthening exercises help improve mobility and strength of the back and also reduce the severity and duration of possible future back pain.
Cultivate a good sitting posture:
Because poor sitting posture is the most common cause of back pain, correcting it and cultivating a good posture gives a lasting relief to back pain and prevents it from reoccurring.
Slouching or Sitting in awkward positions at work or in the car increase the tension on the spine and soft tissues of the back building up to back pain.
The correct way of sitting is upright with your shoulder relaxed and body supported against the back of your chair and your feet flat on the floor.
Also try not to stay in the same sitting position for long. This contrubues to back pain too.
Manage your weight
Being overweight increases the tension and strain on the back, causing back pain which tends to be easily provoked and more painful. Therefore it is important to keep your weight in check in order to strike weight off as one of the reasons for your back pain.