Neck and back pains are something most of us go through at some point in our lives—there’s no shame in admitting. Not all of us are posture-freaks and right-pillow-gang, so yeah, we’ll trigger pains in our neck and our back every once in a while. However, it’s not something that we enjoy. So, why not think about how to treat it and lessen the effect?
Well, if the pain is worse and you think you cannot treat it by yourself, we immediately recommend you to get professional back or neck pain treatment—there’s no other option here. However, if the pain is slight, there are some tips you can follow and decrease the effects.
There are multiple ways to treat pains in the back and neck. First, you have to figure out how did the pain occur in the first place. Most people suffer pain in the back and neck areas due to their wrong posture—they sit in front of the laptop for hours with their neck bent towards the screen, or they sleep on the pillow that is too hard or too soft for their neck. Other reasons might be weightlifting, sports, or accidents—these causes can also be whiplash, which is not a usual pain and demands doctor’s treatment.
Whatever the reason may be, try to pinpoint it so you can prevent it from happening again. However, if everything is perfect and you can’t seem to figure out the root cause of the problem, you can just start the treatment and feel better.
In this article, we have listed down five amazing treatments for neck and back pain. Keep on reading and get rid of the pain.
Use Ice and Heat Pads
You have probably seen a lot of people using ice on their back to get rid of the pain, while some use heat pads. So, if one person is using cold and the other is using heat, which is the right way? well, both are right, and you should do both, but not irregularly.
The trick is to use ice on your pain area for the first 48 hours of the pain. After that, use heat. Using ice and heat (in that order) can reduce the pain that triggers in your muscle. First, the ice keeps the swelling low and prevents possible inflammation, acting as an anesthetic for your pain area. However, ice loses its effect after around 48 hours.
Therefore, heat comes second. The best way to use heat on your body is through heat pads. The heat increases the blood flow, allowing it to reach the tissues, which consequently relax your muscles.
Don’t Be Afraid to Take Meds
Don’t immediately go for meds, without proper thought. And don’t think to never go for meds, no matter what happens. Taking too many meds without any reason is harmful, but there’s no problem in taking meds when you think they might do what home remedies cannot.
Over-the-counter medicines are best for neck and back pains. Inflammation, which can be pretty nasty in terms of serious pains, should be treated medically if cooling doesn’t help. Over-the-counter drugs like Ibuprofen and aspirin are usually recommended by health experts for inflammation reduction and pain relief; some also recommend naproxen sodium.
However, these non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), cannot be used in long term. That is because prolonged use of NSAIDs can cause gastrointestinal issues; therefore, check with your healthcare provider before you get hooked on them. To be frank, they are not advisable for more than a week—which is a short-term, recommended use. If you feel you need to use them for longer, it’s better that you check in with the neck or back injury doctor.
Apart from that, some health experts also recommend acetaminophen. It is not an NSAID but can relieve pain in the long term without causing gastrointestinal problems. But yes, it has side effects.
The best advice you can get from this whole thing is to get a doctor’s prescription before using any drug that you are not absolutely sure about—even if it’s over-the-counter.
Have a Massage
People get massages all the time after a long day at work. No doubt, it’s always quite relieving. However, it is best when it is actually needed, such as at the time of neck and back pain.
To be clear, we are not talking about friendly massages that you can probably get from someone from your family or friends; no, we are talking about someone who absolutely knows what they are doing, professional massage.
If you are willing to have a companion, massage from a professional masseuse can prove to be a perfect healer. A gentle massage is excellent pain relief. It stretches tightened muscles, which then leads to healing.
A massage might be just what your neck and back need to start healing.
Don’t Stop Moving
When you are suffering from pain in your neck and back, you are likely to feel fatigued and lazy. Your brain will tell you to stay in bed all day. Although you do have to rest and take more naps than you usually do—treat your back like it’s sick—you still can’t stop moving at all.
If you stay in bed all day and leave your back as it is, it would not heal properly. In fact, the chances of your back being in the shape that it was before would get very low. So, what you need to do is move around, go for walks, do simple exercise, perform a few low-key stretches, while also take the recommended amount of rest.
It is a scientifically proven study that limited joints and muscle movement can be more effective in the treatment of back pain than mainstream, conventional methods like drugs and rest. While you have to rest and you should use over-the-counter medicines for pain relief, you should also engage yourself in inactivity to pass the restriction point of your muscles.
Track Your Routine
Pain requires adjustments, there’s no doubt in that. If you have a severe headache, you would obviously have much less screen time, right? Similarly, if you have back or neck pain, you need to shed light on what you are doing wrong. It would be of great benefit if you have something like Iron Neck which will help strengthen your neck. And with a stronger neck, you’ll get the benefit of having a lesser chance of getting neck or back pain
For example, waking up late can be the thing you need to rectify. Having late nights, using wrong pillows, sleeping on the sofa, and such activities are needed to be adjusted as your body heals. Most importantly, make sure that your posture is not bent (outwards or inwards) when you are sitting or standing.
Maintaining a normal curvature of your spine is the way to recover from acute back and neck pain. You need to support the hollow of your back, and you can do it by being conscious about your posture. If you start doing it while you are in pain, you are bound to have a speedy recovery.
Those were five (of many) tips that can increase your chances of recovery from neck and back pain, while also multiplying the speed of recovery. You also need to remember that whenever you are not sure, you can go to the doctor and get a professional check-up, proper diagnosis, and best advice.
We hope these tips helped you feel and look active, relaxed, and better than ever. Stay hydrated. Stay safe. Good luck.