Low Back Pain? Here's How To Treat It At Home

Most people have low back pain now and then. In many cases, it isn’t serious and self-care can help. 

Sometimes low back pain can be a sign of a bigger problem. Call your healthcare provider if your pain returns often or gets worse over time. For the long-term care of your back, get regular exercise, lose any excess weight and learn good posture.

Take a short rest

Lying down during the day may be beneficial for short periods of time if severe pain increases with sitting or standing. Long-term bed rest could be detrimental.

Reduce pain and swelling

  • Cold reduces swelling. Both cold and heat can reduce pain. Protect your skin by placing a towel between your body and the ice or heat source.
  • For the first few days, apply an ice pack for 15 to 20 minutes .
  • After the first few days, try heat for 15 minutes at a time to ease pain. Never sleep on a heating pad.
  • Over-the-counter medicine can help control pain and swelling. Try aspirin or ibuprofen.


Exercise

Exercise can help your back heal. It also helps your back get stronger and more flexible, preventing any reinjury. Ask your healthcare provider about specific exercises for your back.

Use good posture to avoid reinjury

  • When moving, bend at the hips and knees. Don’t bend at the waist or twist around.
  • When lifting, keep the object close to your body. Don’t try to lift more than you can handle.
  • When sitting, keep your lower back supported. Use a rolled-up towel as needed.


How GMC Can Help 


Read more about back pain, and tips for dealing with it at GMC’s Health (e) Library online. And if you’re ready to talk to a physician, find the perfect one for you at gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/physician.

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