Thursday, December 8, 2016

Lower back pain? Check out these tips!



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Lower back pain? Check out these tips!

If you’ve ever experienced lower back pain, you are not alone. An estimated 75-85 percent of Americans will suffer from a form of lower back pain in their lifetime.


Spine-health has found six simple ways you can help reduce your lower back pain.
Bonus: None of the following suggestions involve a trip to the doctor’s office!


1. Release inner endorphins


Toss out the Tylenol!

Endorphins are hormones that can block pain signals from reaching your brain.  By finding activities that release endorphins, such as meditation and exercise, you can decrease your back pain without pain medication.  


2. Get enough sleep


Sleep is the answer to everything... Right?

Poor sleep can worsen your back pain. Make sure you are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep, otherwise your pain could progress throughout the day.

Unfortunately, two-thirds of people with chronic back pain suffer from a sleep disorder.  If you are having trouble sleeping due to chronic pain, consult your doctor.  


3. Exercise your core


No, you will not have a six pack after day three of exercising.  

Your core muscles support your spine, so a stronger core will help reduce your pain. Simply dedicate 20 minutes of your day to core strengthening activities.  Be patient.  You will not feel relief right away!


4. Sooth pain with hot or cold therapy


You finally have a use for those frozen peas in your freezer...

Cold therapy reduces inflammation and acts as a local anesthetic by slowing down the nerve impulses.  Heat therapy stimulates blood flow and suppresses pain messages that are being sent to the brain.  


5. Stretch your hamstrings twice a day


Wait... What do leg muscles have to do with back pain?

Tight hamstrings can greatly affect your lower back.  The tight muscles can cause strain and stress on your joints and back.  Gently stretch your hamstrings twice a day, and your back pain can be reduced immensely.  


6. Engage your brain


Train your brain to ignore the pain.

Pain is interpreted by your brain.  So, what if you can teach your brain on how to ignore these pain signals? You can!  By using relaxation techniques, visual imagery, and distraction techniques, you can train your brain to process the pain differently.  

Allie Raich

Health Information Management, 2017

References
Burke, S. (2015, October 8). 6 Overlooked remedies for lower back pain relief.