How to Relieve Back Pain and Muscle Tension Naturally
We’ve all had back pain at one time or another, due to sitting long time on the computer, poor posture, working hard in the garden or starting a new excessive program. Backache is one of the most common physical complaints, and many people suffer from it chronically. So what can you do to relieve back pain and muscle tension?
If you suffer from muscle tension, stiffness soreness, then the first step is a hot bath with 2-3 cups of Epsom salts added to the water. It can relieve back pain and swelling of muscle tension. Follow this with the application below, and you might feel a dramatic relief. If your pain worsens, see your physician or chiropractor. Read here more about the great uses for Epsom salt.
Apply heat or ice
According to webmd website there is some evidence that heat can help decrease low back pain. Although there is little proof that cold will help, some people do find that heat or cold help them: apply heat, such as hot packs, baths and showers for 15-20 minutes at a time. Ice and cold packs can relieve pain, swelling, and inflammation from injuries and other conditions such as arthritis. You may also want to try switching between heat and cold. Use heat for 15-20 minutes, then a few hours later use ice for 10 to 15 minutes.
Visit a good chiropractor
Visiting a trusted chiropractor is very effective for acute back or neck pain, the type of sudden injury that results from moving furniture or getting tackled or doing a wrong movement. Chiropractic is also used as a pain relief alternative for muscles, joints, bones, and connective tissue, such as cartilage, ligaments, and tendons, and is sometimes used in conjunction with conventional medical treatment. I had in the past several issues with joint movements that pinched a nerve and caused me acute back pain in which I could barely move. Visiting my chiropractor was the first step I did in these cases, and it helped me tremendously.
Chiropractors use hands-on spinal manipulation to align the body’s musculoskeletal structure, particularly the spine. In some cases, these treatments enable the body to heal itself without surgery or medication. The manipulation done by the chiropractor is used to restore mobility to joints restricted by tissue injury caused by a traumatic event, such as falling, or repetitive stress, such as sitting without proper back support. The treatment plan may involve one or more manual adjustments in which the chiropractor manipulates the joints, using a controlled, sudden force to improve range and quality of motion. Many chiropractors also include exercise/rehabilitation into the treatment plan.
According to WebMD, back pain is the No. 1 reported reason for seeking acupuncture. Acupuncture is part of the traditional Chinese medicine and involves inserting thin needles at certain points on the body. When done by an experienced and trained acupuncturist, this procedure is generally safe. What’s good about acupuncture is that chronic low back pain is one of the conditions that research suggests acupuncture may be an effective tool for treating. Acupuncture can provide pain relief, reduce inflammation, improve muscle stiffness and joint mobility and improves the outcome when added to conventional treatments such as rehabilitation exercises.
The aim of physical therapy is to decrease pain, increase function and provide a maintenance program to prevent further back problems. Usually a physical therapy program for back pain has two components: passive physical therapy that is done to the patient to help reduce the patient’s pain to a more manageable level, and active exercises done by the patient himself to rehabilitate the spine. These usually include stretching, strengthening exercises and low-impact aerobic exercise.
Further reading: Read my article on how to use tennis ball to relieve back pain and sciatic pain. You can also try these simple exercises to treat a stiff neck.
A lot of studies have shown the power of the ancient practice of yoga, which emphasizes stretching, strength, and flexibility, to relieve back pain and improve back function. People who practice yoga or doing specific back stretches are twice as likely to cut back on pain medications for their back aches as people who managed symptoms on their own, according to a study published in the journal Archives of Internal Medicine.
A three-year study funded by the US National Institutes of Health studied people with chronic lower back problems and found that those who practiced yoga were better at overcoming pain and depression than those who followed conventional treatments for lower back pain.
You can watch this video demonstrating stretches for back pain.
There are certain essential oils that are particularly good to treat back pain naturally. These essential oils have anti-inflammatory properties and they help to relieve tension and muscle spasms.
Chamomile, lavender, clary sage and frankincense essential oils are soothing and help to control muscle spasms and have pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties. Rosemary and peppermint essential oils have also antispasmodic properties and improve blood circulation and thus helps in relieving back pain. Other good essential oils are ginger essential oil that can ease back pain and improve mobility and yarrow that has anti-inflammatory and anti-spasmodic properties.
For massaging your back you can use any of these oils on their own, or you can blend two or more essential oils together. The essential oils need to be blended first with a carrier oil, such as jojoba oil. Use about 10 drops of essential oil per 1 ounce of carrier oil. Have another person massage this oil blend into your back, or any other body part where your muscles are sore. Using this blend on skin that is warm from a bath or shower will encourage penetration. Use 1-2 times a day.
You can also take an aromatherapy bath as an effective method to soothe aching muscles by adding 10 drops of the above essential oils directly to warm bath water and soak for 15-20 minutes. Find more information in my previous article about the top 16 essential oils to relieve pain and how to use them.
If you are interested to learn more about essential oils you can find useful information in my e-book Magical Aromatherapy. This book will help you to discover the power of essential oils and the most effective ways to use them.
Read my other related articles:
1. Lower Back and Stomach Pain: Possible Causes and Treatments
2. Foam Roller Exercises for Sciatic and Back Pain
3. Top 13 Exercises to Strengthen Your Back and Reduce Back Pain