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Pain on the back is one of the most common complaints of adults in various parts of the world. This is perhaps because our back is subjected to stress on a daily basis regardless of what we do – whether we are sitting down or standing up, our back still puts up with the weight of our body.

Home remedies for back pain

There are a number of ways to relieve back pain. However, there is this one huge myth about it that has been going around for a while and it says that one should go on complete bed rest if back pain is felt.  Completely untrue. When one starts to feel pain on the back, he must not drop everything he’s doing and go on a complete hiatus. Reducing stress would be more like it – which means that physical workload should be slightly reduced. That is of course if there are no accompanying symptoms to back pain such as fever, loss of bladder and bowel control, unexplained weight loss, or weakness.

Here are some tips that would help should you start to feel back pain:

  • Apply cold compress to the area. Ideally ice should be applied for the first 48-72 hours, after which hot compress should follow.
  • Take over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen.
  • Sleep in fetal position. You can also place a pillow behind your knees so that your back is relieved of pressure.
  • Refrain from working-out 2-3 weeks since onset of pain. Then, gradually resume your regular routine after the 3rd week.
  • Get help from a physical therapist if necessary.

The benefits of exercise

Exercising regularly does your body a handful of favors. One of them being the most popular: weight loss. It also helps improve posture, strengthens the back, and boosts flexibility. Make sure that your exercise program is complete with cardiovascular exercise, stretching, and strength training. However, you should always listen to what your physical therapist says. When he tells you not to jog, lift weights, or do sit up – then don’t. These are normally activities that shouldn’t be done immediately after recovery unless otherwise advised by the PT.

More serious causes of back pain

The above recommendations are only applicable to non serious back pain that is usually caused by stress or strain. If you feel and you believe that a more serious condition could be causing pain or discomfort on your back, then it’s best to seek medical help immediately. You could start by scheduling a consultation with your general physician, who will run some tests and conduct physical examination. If he figures you need to consult with a specialist, he will then refer you to a spinal specialist or an orthopedic surgeon.


Proper care of the back probably gets lesser attention than it actually deserves. People are usually more worried or careful about the other body parts because the back seems to be resilient and less vulnerable to diseases. However, one must realize that it is that one area of the body that holds us straight when we’re standing, keeps us propped up when we’re seated, and supports our weight when lifting heavy things. It always pays to be careful, and as they say, “Prevention is better than cure”.

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This article was written by Cedric Loiselle for Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Center. If you are looking for the best Milwaukee spinal specialists, read more of Loiselle’s articles for tips and advice.

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