Millions of Americans suffer from back pain each year, often due to strain or weakness in the muscles that align the back. In curing back pain, patients must first identify the underlying cause of the pain, then perform exercises that help strengthen and realign back muscles. If you suffer from back pain, it is essential to first speak with a doctor before beginning any new exercise regimen, as these moves may exacerbate pain or mask an underlying medical condition.
Simple Back Stretches
Stretching is an often overlooked action that helps patients treat and improve back pain. If you suffer from pain in the back muscles, speak with a doctor and then attempt these simple stretches, which help elongate the muscles and improve flexibility. Although there are a variety of back stretches available, many patients find comfort in backward stretches. To perform sit on your knees and slowly recline backwards, creating an arch in the spine and stretching your back muscles. An additional stretch requires you to sit with your legs out in front; next, placeyour right foot over the left leg, and turn the spine backwards to bring the right hand next to the left hand behind the back. The position is held for five seconds before returning slowly back to the beginning position and completing the exercise for the opposite side.
Back Pain Exercises
If simple stretch movements do not alleviate back pain, more complex exercises can be completed to reduce pain in the back. Several exercises, including pelvic tilts and knees-to-chest moves, help strengthen and stretch the back muscles, reducing tension in the spine. The pelvic tint requires you to lie on your back with legs bent and feet on floor. Tighten your abdominal muscles and lower your lower back to the floor, holding for 5 seconds before relaxing and completing again. The knees-to-chest exercise requires you to lie on your back and bring one knee at a time up to the chest for 10 seconds at a time.
Reducing Back Pain
If you suffer from pain in the back muscles, it's important not to aggravate the condition or worsen any symptoms. Consequently, patients suffering from back pain are advised not to sit in chairs for periods over 10 minutes, and to use a support system, such as a rolled towel or a pillow, between the chair and the small of the back. In addition, patients are advised to sleep on their back to reduce tension in the back. Finally, patients should avoid lifting or moving heavy objects for 10 to 12 days after back pain begins, or until pain subsides. It's essential to contact a physician immediately if you experience sharp back pain, or pain does not subside within 10 days.