31 million Americans are experiencing back pain at any given time. If you're one of these people, there's no need to remain in distress.
Read on to learn five of the most common causes of neck and back pain and how to treat them at home.
A poor lifting technique is often the cause of lower back pain. If this happens to you, apply heat or ice to the painful area using ice for the first 2 or 3 days, then heat afterward.
You may also take over-the-counter medicines like ibuprofen. You should recover from the symptoms relatively quickly, but don't work yourself too hard while recovering.
For future reference, when lifting something heavy, you should bend your knees and squat down as close as possible to the object. Grab hold and straighten your legs to lift it. Don't twist as you lift.
A good lifting technique will help to prevent future injuries.
It's not uncommon for the underlying cause of neck pain to be poor posture or even an awkward sleeping position.
Joint and muscle relief gels can help you cope with the pain. But in the long term, you may need to improve your posture.
If your symptoms don't go away, you can also try buying a low, firm pillow to sleep on. Using too many pillows overnight leads to unnatural neck bending – which can cause pain.
Tension headaches can also be caused by bad posture, although they might also be the result of stress or anxiety, dehydration or tiredness.
Stress-related headaches may best be treated by a change in lifestyle, such as doing more exercise or taking up yoga.
In the short term, there are benefits to using ibuprofen to relieve your symptoms, and you should also drink lots of water to stay hydrated.
A slipped disc occurs when a vertebra is damaged and presses on nerves. This is a fairly common cause of neck and back pain.
This condition can be very painful. To begin with, you may need to rest your back for a few days.
But gentle exercise will help to speed your recovery after the pain becomes less severe.
You may also need to consult with a professional who can organize a suitable exercise regime and treatment program.
Whiplash is caused by a person's head moving quickly backward and then forward with force. It might be the result of an automobile accident or a sports injury.
To treat whiplash, painkillers and ice are a good starting point. A doctor may also recommend the use of a neck brace to support the injury, but you shouldn't use these for too long as they may weaken the muscles in your neck.
If your neck or back pain persists
If you've been trying to recover for several weeks, you may need professional help to aid your recovery.
We take an integrative approach to wellness and are dedicated to helping people recover from neck and back pain.
Make an appointment today, if you have persistent neck or back pain that's negatively affecting your life.
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