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5 Remedies for Chronic Lower Back Pain

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If you’re trying to manage chronic lower back pain, you’re not alone. The World Health Organization estimates that 619 million people around the world currently live with lower back pain. 

Our team of board-certified orthopedic surgeons understands just how much back pain can impact your quality of life. That’s why we focus on diagnosing and treating chronic lower back pain here at Orthopedic Specialists of Oakland County.

In addition to your treatment options here in our Bloomfield Hills and Clarkston, Michigan offices, several at-home remedies can complement your treatment plan and offer relief.

Let’s take a look.

5 nonsurgical strategies for managing chronic back pain

There are many types of nonsurgical strategies for managing chronic back pain. These include: 

Get regular exercise

While you might not feel like exercising if you’re experiencing active back spasms, the reality is that regular exercise can help prevent back pain in the long run.  Focus on low-impact exercises such as walking, swimming, or yoga to strengthen your lower back muscles. 

In addition to strengthening your back muscles, focus on your leg and core muscles too. If your hamstrings, for example, are weak, your hips dive forward and make your lumbar spine more compressed. This can lead to wear-and-tear, disc bulging, and nerve impingement. Incorporate stretching exercises to target your hamstrings and hip flexors for improved flexibility.

Try heat and cold therapy

Apply heat, like a hot water bottle or heating pad, to relax tense muscles and enhance blood flow. Soaking in a hot bath can also provide soothing relief.

 Alternatively, use cold packs to reduce inflammation and numb the affected area.

Maintain good posture

Pay attention to your posture, whether you’re sitting, standing, lifting items, or lying down.  Utilize ergonomic-friendly chairs, lumbar supports, and take breaks during prolonged sitting. When driving in your car, refrain from sitting on your wallet; it’s convenient, but it can contribute to sciatica.

Sleeping on your stomach is the worst position for your spine. Sleep on your side and use support pillows between your legs if needed.

Apply mind-body techniques

If stress is contributing to your chronic pain, practice mindfulness meditation, deep breathing exercises, or progressive muscle relaxation to reduce stress and alleviate muscle tension. Mind-body activities like yoga or tai chi can also help decrease your pain sensitivity. 

Manage your weight

Maintain a healthy weight to reduce strain on your lower back. Combine a balanced diet with regular exercise to contribute to weight management. 

When to seek medical attention for chronic back pain pain

An occasional backache is one thing. It’s not uncommon to feel sore after a day of lifting weights or after a minor muscle strain, but when pain becomes chronic, don’t brush it off. There are many reasons why you might have back pain, and the right treatment can vary depending on what’s causing your pain.

Confirm the source of your pain

Here at Orthopedic Specialists of Oakland County, our team specializes in diagnosing and treating back pain. Common sources of low back pain include osteoarthritis, pinched nerves, sciatica, herniated discs, spinal compression, and spondylolisthesis.

Explore your surgical options

Once your Orthopedic Specialists of Oakland County provider confirms the source of your pain, it’s time to review your treatment options. In addition to at-home treatments and lifestyle modifications, you may also benefit from surgical intervention. Depending on your needs, you may benefit from decompression (laminectomy), discectomy, spinal fusion, or other minimally invasive spine surgeries.

Physical therapy can also help you regain strength and range of motion after surgery.

Don’t let chronic lower back pain ruin your life. Schedule your appointment by clicking here or giving us a call at 248-335-2977.