What to do about lower back pain

Lower Back Pain Treatment Methods

When people complain about back pain they’re usually referring to their lower back. You’re probably familiar with lower back pain in some form. Often, you can have pain in your lower back from sitting too long or doing a lot of heavy lifting.

In some cases of back pain, you’ll need to visit a health care professional, such as a physical therapist. They can develop personalized treatments to reduce pain and treat it at its source to help prevent future pain.

However, if you don’t think your pain is serious enough for professional treatment, you can try some of these methods on your own to reduce back pain:

Exercise your core

The core muscles play a major role in supporting your upper body. When the core muscles are weak and stiff, they cannot support the upper body and spine as well as they should. This increases pressure on the spine, which causes pain.

Some simple core exercises, like crunches, planks and side planks can engage the core muscles to help them grow stronger.

Stretch your hamstrings

Your hamstrings are the muscles on the back of your thighs that are connected to your lower back. Sitting for long periods of time can weaken these muscles and lead to tension. This can affect your lower back and cause pain and conditions like sciatica.

Stretch your hamstring muscles to help them stay strong and flexible to avoid putting extra pressure on your lower back. A simple stretch is to sit in a chair and straighten out one leg in front of you while leaving the other planted firmly on the ground. Reach toward your toes. You should feel the back of your leg stretching out.  

Apply some ice and heat

Icing and heating your back can provide some pain relief while reducing some of its causes. Icing the back lessens swelling and inflammation. Apply some ice or a cold pack wrapped in a towel to your back for 15 minutes. Do this two or three times a day for a couple of days.

After a couple of days of icing, you can switch to heating. Heat improves the circulation of fluids and blood in and out of your back. It’s also soothing and comfortable.

Visit Whatcom Physical Therapy for back pain treatment

Have you tried home treatments like these for reducing back pain but are still experiencing it? You may need professional treatment from a physical therapist. Contact our team today for more information about physical therapy for back pain or to schedule an initial appointment.