Lower back or lumbar muscle sprains and strains are the more common causes for lower back pain. This area of the back is more prone to strain due to its involvement in bending, twisting, moving and its overall weight-bearing function. Muscle strain in the lumbar area occurs when the muscle fibers become abnormally torn or stretched. A lumbar sprain occurs when ligaments which are tough tissue bands which hold the bones together, become torn from an attachment. Both conditions are typically caused from gradual overuse of the back or sudden injuries.
When the lumbar spine becomes sprained or strained, soft tissues in this area become inflamed. It is the inflammation which results in pain along with muscle spasms. A lumbar sprain or strain can become debilitating.
The three muscle types which support your spine include:
– Flexors, known as the iliopsoas muscles and abdominal muscles
– Extensors, which include the gluteal muscles and the back muscles
– Rotators and obliques, known as the side muscles
– Lower back pain that can radiate into the area of the buttocks, but will not affect the area of the legs
– Stiffness experienced in the area of the lower back that restricts range-of-motion
– Muscle spasms that occur at rest or with activity
– You are unable to maintain a normal posture caused from the pain and/or stiffness
– Pain which persists over a maximum period of 10 to 14 days
Treatment for Back Strain and Sprains
To begin with, bed rest is usually recommended for a few days. This should not exceed 3 days, as bed rest that is prolonged can result in a reduction in muscle strength. It also contributes to muscle stiffness, which can add to your discomfort and pain. Strains are traditionally treated with anti-inflammatory, nonsteroidal medication when the pain is diagnosed as mild-to-moderate.
Your physician may also suggest physical therapy. These therapists will conduct an evaluation which is usually combined with your doctor’s diagnosis, which will dictate a treatment plan designed specifically for lower back pain. Your therapy might include gentle massage, pelvic traction, heat and ice therapy, electrical muscle-stimulation, ultrasound along with stretching exercises. For severe pain muscle relaxants and medication may be beneficial when combined with physical therapy.
6 Natural Ways to Treat And Relieve Your Back Strain
Here are a few natural pain-relieving techniques that you can use to treat back strain:
1. How to Ease Morning Pain
If the pain in your back is intense and very painful as you wake up, place a heating-pad or hot water bottle under the site of the pain before you get up from your bed. This heat will ease the stiffness and warm up your muscles. It will also assist in preventing muscle spasms when you start to move and encourages improved blood-flow to these areas.
2. Go for Regular Massages
Massage will promote circulation, relax the muscles, ease stress. It also helps to boost the endorphins levels in your body, which are the pain relievers that a human body produces naturally. There are mobile therapists that will even travel to your home. If the thought of lying down on a table seems too painful, you can ask for a massage chair. Research has proven that massage is a natural technique which offers more than just making you feel better. Many people have found that regular massages work effectively to ease stiff lower back pain.
3. Laughter with Yoga Programs
Laughing will increase the intake of oxygen, reduce stress as well as promote endorphin production. With a combination of all these elements, it helps to reduce your pain in a natural way. The laughter yoga program is designed to assist people in reducing pain in a natural way using laughter exercises. This form of yoga is appealing to those who find any other forms of exercise excessively painful.
4. Water Therapy Programs
Water buoyancy offers a way to enjoy benefits associated with exercise with a lot less pain. If warm water is a more preferable option for you, look for the water-exercise classes held in hydrotherapy pools. Water-therapy classes are often conducted in a water temperature that ranges between 83 to 88 degrees. While the hydrotherapy pools are in most cases over 90 degrees.
5. Change the Way You Sleep
If your back strain has started to affect your sleep, you may want to consider changing your sleep position. The reclining positions can assist in reducing the stress placed on the lower back. If you find this position comfortable, then you may want to invest in an adjustable-bed. You can even rent one of these beds from one of the medical supply companies to ensure that it really assists with your back pain before you commit to buying one. The wedge-shaped cushion is also another easy and inexpensive way to test if the reclining position will help you.
6. Take, Hot Long Baths
Never underestimate the soothing effect that hot water can produce when it comes to easing pains and aches. A hot bath may relax your muscles enough to allow for a bit of stretching. While a hot bath may be extremely relaxing, many people find it hard to fall asleep after a bath. If you are one of these people, take your bath at least 2 hours before you go to bed at night. To improve the relaxation and soothing effects, use a bath-cushion that will support the back while you are inside the tub.
Finding pain relief that is effective for a back strain or sprain will usually involve processes of trial-and-error or a combination of natural approaches. This is why it is worthwhile to explore a number of pain-relief techniques before deciding on the right one for you. A few people find natural approaches to medication can assist them in effectively reducing the pain medication amounts that they need. When treating a condition such as back pain, it is always advisable to try as many natural techniques as possible before turning to traditional medications that usually only treat the symptoms and are often associated with adverse side effects.
Article Submitted By Community Writer