10 tips to reduce back pain
Does back pain interfere with your favourite activities? Try these 10 be-nice-to-yourself tips and experience relief.
When back pain strikes, your favourite activities – from window shopping on the way to work to playing with the kids - can take a back seat to discomfort. But by following these pain-reducing tips that include shopping, cool workouts, and spa-like treatments, you'll be feeling good in no time!
- Put your feet up: Just make sure to limit your rest to 1 or 2 days. Any longer and your muscles could start to weaken, which will actually make pain worse.
- Take a lesson from the spa: Try applying ice (frozen vegetables or an ice pack wrapped in a towel work well) immediately after pain develops for up to 20 minutes, several times a day. After 2 to 3 days, switch to heat (20 to 30 minutes at a time). In addition to ice and heat, massage can also help relieve back pain, especially muscle spasms.
- Raid the medicine cabinet: Over-the-counter pain relievers may work to reduce swelling and relieve your pain.
- Try low-impact exercise: Being inactive can contribute to back pain, but low-impact activities like swimming (you've been meaning to try that new aqua-Pilates class!) and walking may help reduce pain.
- Go shoe shopping: Skip the stilettos and pick up some stylish and supportive flats instead.
- Maintain a healthy weight: Being overweight can make your back pain worse, especially if you carry the extra pounds around your waistline.
- Don't smoke: Smokers have lower levels of oxygen in their spinal tissues, which can slow down the healing process.
- Strike a pose: Stand tall, with your ears, shoulders and hips in a straight line. Keep your head up and your stomach pulled in.
- Sit pretty: Make sure your chair has good back support and is the right position and height. If you have to sit for long periods of time, take frequent breaks (and get caught up on the water-cooler gossip!).
- Lift with the legs: Keep your back straight, and avoid twisting. Better yet, enlist a lifting buddy if the object is just too heavy or awkward.
Source(s) - © McNeil Consumer Healthcare, division of Johnson & Johnson Inc. 2010Back
At London Drugs, we understand that living with chronic back pain is a painful way to live. From oral pain medications to topical painkillers and everything in between, your London Drugs pharmacist can help you put your mind - and your body - at ease.