7 Lower Back Pain Treatment Options: Complete Guide 2022
Back pain is one of the leading causes of disability. According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), the mean average age of patients suffering from back pain is decreasing, with teenagers being inflicted at an alarming rate.
However, with improvements in medical technology and pain research, severe back pain is no longer as debilitating as it was once considered. Acute back pain is manageable with surgical treatment, prescription drugs, physical therapy, and a wide array of other treatments.
Today, we take a brief look at the basic biology of back pain, other pain related complications, some remedies, and management options.
Table of Contents
Causes of Lower Back Pain
Surprisingly enough, almost 95% of the people suffering from chronic low back pain don’t have a definite anatomical trigger for it. Despite this, most physicians have pinpointed chronic pain to a few causes:
The Most Common Causes
Obesity: Obesity is associated with increased chances of back pain. Obese people are 33% more likely to experience low back pain at some point in their life. This is because the extra weight puts pressure on the spinal joints and disks, which can lead to nerve compression. Therefore, the first rule of thumb is to have a healthy weight.
Aging: As you grow older, the discs in your spinal cord begin drying out, wearing away, and shrinking. This causes the spinal canal to get narrower, and sometimes the spinal column can shrink. As this happens progressively with age and the cartilage starts wearing out, patients experience stiffness and tight muscles along the spinal cord because the spinal bones start rubbing against each other.
Spondylolisthesis: Spondylolisthesis is a condition that makes your spinal cord unstable. The vertebrae or the spinal bones move more than they should and often can slip, creating pressure on the nerve fibers and leading to severe pain.
Diseases: Degenerative disc disease, herniated disc, sciatic nerve compression, and even musculoskeletal and skin diseases such as spinal stenosis and rheumatoid arthritis can cause chronic back pain and, in severe cases, can travel down, leading to leg pain and obstructing movement.
Physiological trauma: Significant trauma sustained by the muscles of bones, such as hairline fractures, broken bones, sprains, and strains, are the most common causes of back pain. They usually go away with surgery, physical therapy, bed rest, and/or nonsteroidal anti inflammatory drugs.
Lower Back Pain Treatment Options
Although the treatment options depend on the patient’s medical history and the specific cause or type of the pain diagnosed, most cases of back pain are resolved within the same year with a combination of natural remedies and over-the-counter pain relief medication.
If the cause of your back pain is mechanical, that is, it happened when you tried to lift something heavy, muscle strain, muscle spasms, or simply fell asleep in a wrong position; letting your body relax on a flat vertical surface helps. The spine has to be aligned straight for faster recovery.
Often, muscle weakness results in injuries, which is why a moderately active lifestyle is suggested to relieve pain. The trick lies in strengthening your back and abdominal muscles because the stronger these muscles become, the lesser the chances of low back pain. Pilates is also a safer way of exercising your way to a healthy back.
However, it is suggested that you avoid heavy exercises such as deadlifts if you suffer from chronic lower back pain, as it puts more pressure on your nerve roots and joints.
For years, swimming has been considered the best exercise for people dealing with injuries, surgeries, and physiological trauma. The water buoyancy counteracts gravity to decrease the pressure on the spine, enabling people to exercise more efficiently. The freestyle and the backstroke are great for back pain relief and shoulder and neck issues.
Working with physical therapists is one of the go-to non-surgical solutions when treating acute low back pain. The goals are to decrease back pain, increase function and blood flow to the affected area, and teach methods to prevent future back problems.
Your physical therapist will often apply a heating pad to improve blood flow to the area (which helps reduce pain signals) before introducing you to specific exercises and stretching. Once the initial phase of therapy is complete, patients who continue an exercise program are often the most successful in managing their low back pain.
Ice and Heat
Acute low back pain benefits more from ice packs. This is because lowering the body temperature will help constrict the blood vessels, reducing swelling and decreasing inflammation.
On the other hand, heat works best on mechanical back pain. Heat improves the flexibility of soft tissue movement of muscles, leading to overall improved back functioning. The warmth stimulates blood circulation in your lower back and nerve root.
Some forms of back pain require a combination of both to provide relief, as the pain occurs in a complex network of nerves, muscles, tendons, and ligaments.
Medication may be required in combination with supplements and more serious medical interventions for severe cases such as permanent neurological damage, arthritis, and such.
Some of the most commonly used medications include:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
While supplements cannot relieve pain caused by injuries or stress, they can lead to overall improved muscle and bone health, which is vital for preventing future injuries and quick recovery. If muscle weakness results from a poor diet, your doctor will recommend supplements and physical medicine to block pain signals.
Here is a list of some of the most popular supplements and treatments for lower back pain:
6 Best Lower Back Pain Treatments
|Top Consumer's Choice|
|Best Unique Approach|
|Natural Pain-Relief Cream|
|Best Millennial Focused|
|Best in Fast Acting|
Created by Ian Hart, the Back Pain Coach program consists of a series of explanatory videos on how to treat your back pain. Consisting of 8 movements, it takes 16 minutes from your everyday schedule for a lifetime of a strong back.
The movements are designed to reduce inflammation, improve mobility, make your joints flexible, and equip your body to absorb nutrients from the food you consume.
Back Pain Breakthrough is a program that releases the tension in your muscles and helps realign your spine. This way, the core of the problem is addressed, meaning the results are long-lasting and guaranteed. The complex series of movements has primarily been designed to treat bulging or herniated disc issues with the targeted spinal release.
If you are tired of pills or injections that leave you sore, expensive chiropractors, this is the solution.
Full Article: Back Pain Breakthrough Review: Does it Work?
Created by Ann Miller, Flexobliss’ sole focus is to maintain a healthier lower back and make your low back pain go away in just one week. It also gives you healthy muscles to support your spine, improves range of motion, and reduces other low back pain-related symptoms.
Made with 100% natural substances, it is an indispensable part of your everyday diet. It can do magic for your low back pain when combined with a healthy lifestyle and good eating habits.
Full Article: Flexobliss Supplement Reviews: Does it Really Work?
Made to reduce pain sensation within minutes of application, Mindbody cream, as reviewers suggest, can reduce stiffness due to arthritis within just thirty minutes. Made with advanced Red Light Therapy features, it provides permanent results for individuals struggling with myriad bone and muscle issues.
A cream to rub on your body to help lower back pain saves you time and money. Additionally, it can be used on almost any part of your body that hurts.
Combining a set of easy-to-do stretches, Back Pain Miracle program has been specially designed for millennials who have to spend hours hunched over their computers and laptops at work. This is a digital program you can follow from the comfort of your home.
Matt Cook has created this program with three primary aims – to release tension from your back muscles that comes from constant bad posture, safely mobilize your spinal joints to improve range of motion, and compress the pressure between your spine, leading to relaxed nerve fibers.
Apart from external factors, what can truly aid your healing process, is a healthy immune system. VitaCell helps trigger the body’s natural healing process so that it heals itself quicker and more efficiently.
Made with Boswellia Serrata and Green Tea extracts, it boosts blood flow, flushes out harmful toxins from the body, and increases the overall homeostasis of your body. Because it has no harmful chemical ingredients, it can be consumed by people of all ages.
>> Related Article: 7 Best Lower Back Pain Treatment • Top Back Pain Relief of 2022
Life can become difficult when there is a flare-up of your acute low back pain, and even the slightest movement can hurt. But the good news is that the medical field has a myriad of treatment options.
Dietary supplements such as Back Pain Coach when combined with regular physical exams and blood tests to monitor your health, chiropractic care may seem like little things but are game changers when handling low back pain in the long run.
My back pain coach is a novel approach to managing chronic pain that aims to improve the quality of life for anyone dealing with intolerable pain.
You will be able to lessen current pain without suffering any harmful effects in about 16 minutes. For anyone who battles with back pain issues, the videos are useful.
While so many products out in the market advertise themselves as “health supplements,” not all of them are useful. This is why patients suffering from low back pain must always ask their doctors about treatment options before jumping headfirst into them.
It is also important that patients have a strong support network around them and continue to participate in activities they enjoy. So many chronic conditions take away from our mental health that it is easy to sink into a state of depression. This is why it is also important to nurture your mental health too when struggling with low back pain.
>> Related Article: How to Relieve Middle Back Pain without Pills: The Complete Guide 2022
Lower Back Pain Treatment FAQs
What activities should I avoid for low back pain?
You should avoid bending forward to pick up heavy objects. This is because constant forward bending causes increased pressure on your vertebral discs leading to muscle aches and pains.
It is suggested that you avoid sleeping on your stomach. This is because the position disturbs the alignment of your spine, creating undue and uneven pressure on your joints and discs.
Finally, avoid driving for long periods. As this can cause your back muscles to become stiff. If you must, try to take breaks every sixty minutes of driving.
Does low back pain get worse with pregnancy?
During pregnancy, your tendons and ligaments become softer and stretch to prepare your body for labor. Consequently, it strains the joints of your lower back and can aggravate your low back pain.
Fortunately, swimming and prenatal yoga are great ways to combat this.
Can smoking cause low back pain?
Multiple studies have suggested that smoking can damage the arteries in the spinal discs and joints. Smoking has been proven to increase the risk for osteoporosis, which is one of the leading causes of low back pain.
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Author: Vanessa Richards
Vanessa is a mom of 3 lovely children and a software geek. Outside of her career as a health and wellness instructor. She enjoys writing and researching on topics such as finance, software, health and culinary.