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Top 7 Tips To Relieve Back Pain
By Raymond Lee
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You bent down, picked up the laundry basket, straightened up, and yeeow! Pain cuts through your back like a sword. What happened? You have lifted heavier loads than this hundreds of times before. It does not matter. Back pain will seize any opportunity to strike while you are hefting a sack of groceries, slouching in front of the TV, hunching over your desk, standing in line for movie tickets, even sleeping the wrong way. And once it hits, back pain can be relentless. It starts in different ways with different people. You might feel a mild twinge when you sit, walk, drive, tie your shoes, or turn to answer the phone. Or if you are less fortunate, you will feel as though you have been stabbed in the back with an ice pack. Back pain is also an equal-opportunity affliction. Four of every five of us will have back pain at some point in our lives. Here are some tips that you can consider to adopt to relieve back pain.
- Sit Right
Sitting can aggravate your back pain. It is one of the worst things that you can do. If you have to sit, use a chair with good back support and armrests, which can reduce the pressure on your back. Also put a pillow behind your lower back and keep your feet flat on the floor with your knees bent.
- Consider A Pain Reliever
It is recommended an over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) for back pain. Take two 200-milligrams tablets of ibuprofen, no more than three times a day. While an NSAID can relieve pain quickly, healing the inflammation can take 10 to 14 days.
- Turn The Pain On Cold
Ice is especially helpful when the pain is most acute the first two to three days. It helps reduce inflammation and relaxes the muscle spasm. Apply ice to the painful area for about 15 minutes at a time every 2 hours, six to eight times a day. But do not apply ice directly on your skin. It could cause frostbite. Put a thin towel between the ice and your skin.
- Heat It Up - Maybe
It is recommended using ice when back pain is caused by overuse or spasm, and heat if the discomfort is related to stiffness of the joints or muscles. Heat loosens the muscles and makes them more flexible. And if you are using heat, put your hot-water bottle or heating pad on your back, rather than lying directly on it. You do not want to fall asleep and burn yourself.
- Get Into Position To Heal
When your back hurts, trying the following positions may make you more comfortable. Lie on your back on the floor with a pillow or rolled-up towel under your knees and another under your neck. Then raise your arms over your head to give your spine a bit of a stretch. Or you can lie on your side with one pillow between your knees and another under your head. You might also place a rolled-up towel under your wrist.
- Try Tai Chi
Unlike any other types of martial arts, the ancient Chinese practice of tai chi is gentle. And that means it is perfect fro a painful back. It is recommended because it increases your body awareness, involves every part of the body, and can be done by anyone of any age.
- Wear A Corset
Muscles support the bones, disks, and nerves that make up the spine. Weak muscles put more pressure on those structures. So wearing a soft, elasticized corset can help support the back. But do not depend on a corset for too long. Prolonged use of a corset can make the muscles weaker.
Raymond Lee is one of the foremost experts in the health and fitness industry and is the Founder of Bodyfixes Group specializing in body health, muscle development and dieting. He is currently the author of the latest edition of "Neck Exercises and Workouts." Visit http://www.bodyfixes.com for more information.
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Article Submitted On: December 18, 2007