By Courtney Love, NY Daily News
At-home remedies and tools to put your pain at ease
If you suffer from back pain, you know it can be tedious and uncomfortable. Back pain can strike suddenly or during specific activities. Sometimes, it can last for days at a time. Regardless of what’s causing your pain, finding the right products to ease your tension, soreness and discomfort will help you find at-home relief quickly and safely.
Why does back pain occur?
Back pain can be related to a congenital condition, an idiopathic condition, a condition causing chronic pain or it could be the result of an accident or injury. Sometimes, you may not know what specifically caused your pain — it may come on with one wrong twist or turn — and continue to arise.
Typically, torn muscles, pulls, strains, ligament issues, nerve compression and sometimes damage to intervertebral discs are to blame for pain that arises gradually or suddenly without an explicit incident. The severity of these issues can vary, so always remember that even though back pain is very common, every person suffering from it is completely unique.
This means that solutions that work for your friends may not work for you. This is why it’s important to research and experiment with several tools and products to find the best one that eases your pain.
What can I do for my back pain?
In some cases, back pain can ease off on its own. Sometimes it just requires time and a few remedies to get it feeling normal again. However, if your pain continues, you should consult with a professional. A physician, a physiotherapist, a chiropractor, an acupuncturist or a massage therapist should be able to investigate and diagnose your back pain in terms of severity and locality. These professionals have advanced knowledge of the neuromuscular and skeletal system that will help you determine the root cause and best long-term solution for your back pain.
However, whether you decide to visit a professional or not, you’ll likely still require some at-home remedies and tools to put your pain at ease. Luckily, there are several products available that help ease back pain, from machines to topical creams to heat therapy. If you’re recovering from an injury, you might even want to think about getting a muscle stimulator.
7 products available now that can help ease back pain:
Extra-Large Heating Pad by Soothing Company: available at Amazon
Using hot and cold therapy to ease your back pain is commonly recommended by professionals. This large heat pad is filled with flaxseed; you simply place it into the freezer for a cold compress or into the microwave for a comfortably warm compress. You can easily tie and secure it into place around your body and leave it on for approximately 20 minutes at a time. Heat works best for stiff, achy muscles and chronic pain, whereas cold compresses are recommended for sharp nerve pain and inflammation.
Body Comfort Reusable Cold and Instant Heat Pack Gift Set (Lavender Scent): available at Amazon
This pack includes different sizes of compresses ideal for your upper, lower and mid-back that can also relieve pain in other parts of your body. This set can be placed in the fridge for 20 minutes for cold therapy or you can use the ‘click to heat’ button on the interior to trigger heat to flow through the pad. These are great for travel, work, school or home and can be easily stored when not in use. Additionally, the lavender scent promotes relaxation.
TruMedic TENS Electronic Pulse Unit and 4 Electrode Pads: available at Amazon
TENS units are commonly seen in chiropractic clinics and in physiotherapy as they can be beneficial for several different conditions and injuries, including pain management. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation is a form of low-current electrotherapy that is highly effective in stimulating muscles and nerves and targeting pain. This unit includes several massage settings and can be programmed to a strength that suits your needs. Four electrode sticky-pads are included, along with a USB charger.
Back Brace Posture Corrector for Men and Women: available at Amazon
While entirely correcting an issue with your back may need to be done under the care of a specialist, using a brace to aid in achieving better posture can definitely help ease tension on any nerves and vertebrae that may be compressed. This product is made of breathable material and can be adjusted accordingly to fit your body. You can wear it throughout the day or during specific activities where you feel your body may be suffering (such as prolonged periods of sitting, standing or even at the gym).
Dr. Teal’s Epsom Salt Bath Soaking Solution: available at Amazon
Soaking in Dr. Teal’s Epsom Salt is a great way to relax your body and help ease back pain. Epsom salts contain magnesium, which is known to relax and relieve stiff muscles. This 2-pack includes Lavender and Eucalyptus essential oils which add a calming, aromatherapy effect to your bath. Just ensure water is not too hot and that you stay hydrated while soaking.
Adjustable Lumbar Support Pillow for Sleeping Memory Foam: available at Amazon
A pillow to support your back can help relieve tension and pressure within just a few moments of use. You can use it whether you sleep on your back or sides. It promotes better posture and supports your lumbar while you sleep. In many cases of back pain, poor sleeping posture is to blame or at least contributes to discomfort.
Biofreeze Pain Relief Roll-On: available at Amazon
Biofreeze has been used in many sports clinics and chiropractic settings for years; it uses a menthol formula to deliver a rapid, relieving cool sensation to the surface of your skin, that penetrates and works to relieve pain, stiffness and tension wherever it’s applied. In order to apply Biofreeze, you just need to roll it on the area of concern, give it a few seconds to dry, then continue on with your day. You can use Biofreeze anywhere, anytime.