How to Care for a Hurt Back

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When you are suffering from a hurt back, it's difficult to pay attention to anything else. Back pain will make everything in your life a challenge against pain. Treating a back injury is paramount for restoring normal life. There are myriad causes of back injuries and just as many treatments with just one goal: relief.

  • Get some rest. This is usually the primary treatment for a back injury. After a minor back injury, it's recommended to simply rest. Alternating cold with heat and taking an over-the-counter pain reliever and anti-inflammatory is sometimes an effective treatment for back pain. However, extended periods of bed rest are not recommended. This is often harmful, causing the muscles to stiffen and even atrophy in extreme cases. Non-strenuous activity is recommended depending on the severity of the injury.

  • See your physician if back pain persist and there is no relief from rest. See a doctor to ensure there is no long-term damage. A doctor mayprescribe a stronger pain killer than ibuprofen or aspirin to help alleviate some of the pain.

  • See a Chiropractor. The U.S. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality recognizes spinal manipulation by chiropractors and osteopaths as effective for low-back pain. However, most spinal specialist will recommend that patients do not have their necks adjusted---especially when the adjustment involves a rapid twisting of the neck.

  • Get a massage. A deep tissue massage will relax muscles and increase blood flow to the injured area. Sometimes, getting the muscles to relax is enough to lessen back pain.

  • Try physical therapy. It can work wonders. Physical therapy usually consist of treatments like whirlpool baths, massage, controlled application of heat, ultrasound and tailored exercise programs. Many patients find that physical therapy speeds the road to a full recovery from back pain.

  • Exercise for recovery and prevention. Most exercise regimes tailored to back pain are focused on strengthening the core; meaning the abdominal and back muscles that stabilize the spine. Pilates, yoga, stretching and light strength training are generally recommended. By strengthening the muscles, it lessens the likelihood of an old injury flaring up.

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