Updated: Jul 8
Have you ever found yourself suffering from back pain? If so, it can be disheartening. Back pain can cause general discomfort that becomes part of a person's life. Having your back pain is bad enough without having to deal with the stress that comes with not knowing what to do. But our pain management NYC center is here to help.
The treatment options you have if you are suffering from back pain differ from person to person. Here, we list some of the possible ways that you can manage your back pain.
Don't Ignore Your Back Pain
Back pain can be debilitating. If you have it, you know how difficult it is to get through the day. Back pain is one of the most common health problems people experience, and it is currently the leading cause of disability in the US.
Musculoskeletal disorders and injuries account for almost 2 out of every 5 disability days and 70% of all visits to doctors. For most, back pain subsides after a few days, but many face a more lengthy recovery period, and some are forced to seek long-term care.
If you have been suffering from back pain for more than a few days, then it's time to take action. Don't sit around waiting for the pain to go away on its own. Especially if it's been more than a few days, you need to do something about it.
Getting treatment as soon as possible is important because back pain can cause long-term problems. Ignoring your pain could lead to more serious conditions such as arthritis or pinched nerves.
Get a Professional Assessment
Get yourself assessed by an experienced practitioner who knows what they're doing and can give you an accurate diagnosis based on their findings during the examination.
Visiting a pain specialist is one of the best thing you should do when you have back pain. They can perform tests and give advice on what to do next. The sooner you get a diagnosis and start treatment, the better your chances will be of getting relief from your symptoms.
Stay Active as much as Possible
A sedentary lifestyle can make back problems worse, so try to be active every day. Exercise can help strengthen your core muscles, which helps support your spine and reduce stress on the lower back muscles and ligaments.
Some people with chronic back pain avoid exercise because they think it will make their pain worse. But research shows that regular physical activity can actually reduce your risk of developing chronic back pain in the first place — and improve symptoms once they've started. Exercise has also been shown to improve mood, which is important since depression is common among people with chronic back pain.
Make Sure You're Exercising Properly
Exercise is one of the best ways to keep your back strong and flexible. But if you're not exercising correctly, you could be making your pain worse.
Use proper form when lifting weights and performing cardiovascular exercises such as running or biking — no slouching or hunching over. And always warm up before engaging in any strenuous activity that might put pressure on your spine.
A physical therapist can teach you specific exercises for strengthening your core and stretching out tight muscles in the lower back. These exercises can help prevent future episodes of back pain and may also relieve an existing flare-up.
Consider Physical Therapy
Physical therapy is a popular treatment option for back pain. It can help ease discomfort and strengthen the core muscles in your abdomen and lower back, so they support your spine better. Physical therapy can also help you learn how to avoid moving or lifting objects that may aggravate your condition.
Physical therapy can help relieve muscle spasms, improve posture, and improve overall health. These treatments are usually short — just a few weeks — but they can be life-changing if they're done correctly.
Keep Off the Pain Medications
Chronic pain can be debilitating, and it's tempting to turn to medication for relief. But there are risks with using these medications long term.
Pain medications can be useful in treating acute pain from a back injury, but they also carry risks. For example, if you take too many pain meds for too long, you could become addicted to them or experience withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking them.
Some prescription drugs may make your pain worse or cause side effects such as nausea and dizziness. Some studies have shown that opioids can actually increase the risk of developing back pain in the first place, especially if taken for more than three months. Other studies have found that opioids may even worsen chronic back pain symptoms over time.
If you've been taking medication for your back pain and it isn't helping, talk to your doctor about non-drug treatment options that might work better for you.
One of the treatment options is acupuncture, a traditional Chinese medicine modality that stimulates the flow of energy in your body. This ancient practice has been used for thousands of years and some people find it effective.
It involves inserting thin needles into specific points on your body. The idea is that these points relate to different organs in the body and stimulate them with the needles' insertion and removal. Recent studies show that it may help relieve chronic pain and other ailments.
Consider Chiropractic Care
Chiropractic care is a natural treatment for back pain. It focuses on treating the underlying cause of your discomfort rather than just relieving the symptoms.
Chiropractors are trained to identify which joints in your spine are misaligned and then adjust them through gentle manipulation. It's especially effective at reducing chronic pain and improving mobility.
Chiropractic care involves the manipulation of spinal joints to eliminate pressure on nerves that could be causing the pain—the process results in decreased inflammation and improved blood flow, which eases muscle spasms.
The goal is for patients to experience lasting relief from their discomfort so they can return to normal activities without fear of relapsing into pain again.
Keep Your Back Pain from Worsening
Back pain can be a devastating source of misery, but there are plenty of ways to keep yourself feeling good. If you're dealing with back problems, and they're interfering with your ability to lead a happy and healthy life, don't give up hope.
Remember that you have options, and see what resources are available to help you get back on your feet. Seek help from a pain management NYC specialist as soon as possible, and soon enough, you'll be able to sit or stand as much as you want—and avoid any painful symptoms.