Up to 90% of all Australians will experience back pain at least once throughout their lives. It’s a condition we regularly see in the clinic, and makes up a large majority of the conditions we treat on a day to day basis. With that experience we’ve formulated some top tips to help you if indeed your back starts to give you some trouble:
1. Keep moving!
Standing upright might take an almighty effort so the idea of walking when you have back pain may seem too hard. However the latest research suggests that movement is one of the most effective ways to minimise back pain. Many osteopaths are familiar with the term “motion is lotion” as indeed movement allows the muscles to relax and joints to get some gentle movement. Recovery time can decrease dramatically if you can get up off the couch and start walking! The human spine loves the intermittent loading and unloading that movement provides.
2. Avoid lifting
Whilst movement is great for a sore back, lifting is not. It creates extra stress through already inflamed areas of the back. This will only add to your pain!
Tumeric has received a lot of press lately in relation to its use a natural “drug” for pain relief and has been touted as alternative to Voltaren and Nurofen. We stock Nageze at the clinic. Nageze reports, “patients in both clinical and non-clinical settings have reported pain relief in as little as 2 hours”.
4. Ice & Heat
For acute injuries we generally recommend ice in the first 72 hours to help decrease inflammation. For more chronic conditions, heat can be soothing for sore, aching muscles.
5. Drop the extra kgs!
Weight gain of even a couple of kilograms can have a big effect on how your back functions and the amount of stress or pressure it is put under. Whilst it was not been thoroughly studied, it is known that those who are overweight are at a higher risk of developing back pain, joint pain and muscle sprain.
6. Get treatment sooner rather than later!
All too often we hear the phrase: “I wish I’d come to you sooner”. The reason is that osteopathic treatment can reduce your recovery time and get you feeling better sooner. And who wouldn’t want that when their back is killing??
7. Prevention is better than cure
If you’ve experienced back pain in the past, chances are you’ll get it again. With each episode of back pain comes a weakening to the small muscles that surround the spine. Without proper strengthening and rehabilitation to these muscles, research shows us that the injury is likely to occur again. As Osteopaths, it’s easier for us to re-train a back that isn’t in pain – we urge you to get treatment straight away.
So come in for an assessment and get on top of your back pain, before it gets on top of you!
Book online here or call the clinic on 5941 4157. We’d prefer to see you sooner rather than later!