If you wake up in the morning with a crick in your neck or an unexpected twinge when you bend over to tie your shoes, relax: Most causes of acute back or neck pain are treatable. Your doctor will pinpoint the cause (yesterday’s snow shoveling, or maybe the awkward position you found yourself in while gardening) and come up with a plan to ease your discomfort. Over the next few days or week, you can expect your pain to decrease or go away completely.
Chronic pain, on the other hand, the sort that comes on slowly and doesn’t disappear, can be more elusive to diagnose and tougher to treat. Depending on what your doctor determines to be the source of your discomfort, your treatment plan may require multiple and/or combined therapies. And the complexity of your condition may mean that it takes longer to find relief. Depending on whether your back pain is acute or chronic, these are some of the options your doctor may consider.
This may be included first in the patient’s suggested treatment course. The idea is to restrict activities that increase your pain, while promoting other activities that are less painful in order to keep your body’s joints and muscles healthy. Health care providers don’t recommend extended bed rest for a sore back, meaning more than a day or two. After cutting back on exercise, you will gradually increase physical activity to as much as you can tolerate.
Heat and Ice
Ice and heat are options for short-term back pain relief. Cold packs can numb pain, while heat packs increase blood flow and promote muscle and tissue healing.
Pain o Soma 500mg is used to treat manage back pain, you can use a cold compress for up to 20 minutes each hour but avoid applying ice directly to the skin. Instead, make a cold compress using a bag of frozen vegetables or by filling a plastic bag with ice. Wrap the cold pack with a dry towel.
Practicing Good Posture
Chronic back pain is sometimes caused by the least-obvious suspects, including poor posture which can affect the alignment of your spine and lead to pain over time. A Frontiers in Physiology report found that poor posture can negatively affect back muscles and muscle strength of the back.
Pain Relievers for Back Pain
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), Pain o Soma 350mg are the most commonly used first treatments for back pain.
Some NSAID options are available in prescription strengths, including a type of NSAID called a COX-2 inhibitor. Known as Celebrex (celecoxib), this medication is believed to be safer for people who take blood-thinning medicines and might cause fewer digestive and cardiovascular problems.
Muscle relaxers act on the central nervous system to reduce pain and muscle spasms. These medications are prescribed for short periods and can cause drowsiness.
These drugs work with nerve cell receptors to reduce pain. Examples are OxyContin (oxycodone) and Vicodin (acetaminophen with hydrocodone). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), opioids should only be prescribed for a short time because of serious dependency risk and a lack of evidence about long-term effectiveness.
Antidepressants and Back Pain
Health care providers sometimes prescribe antidepressants to manage back pain even if you don’t have depression. These typically come from three classes of antidepressants: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), and tricyclics.
Physical therapy combines passive modalities and therapeutic exercise to help people strengthen muscles while learning how to improve posture and accomplish daily tasks with less pain.
Examples of passive treatments in physical therapy include:
- Heat/cold therapy
- Massage (deep tissue, Swedish, neuromuscular)
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
Different types of nerve stimulation therapy are available for treating back for back pain, including TENS, spinal cord stimulation, and peripheral nerve stimulation (PNS). All three types have been found to be effective in treating chronic low back pain. TENS uses low-voltage currents to treat pain by blocking it or changing your perception. A small device, called a TENS machine, delivers light electrical pulses near the nerves. Spinal cord stimulation uses an implanted medical device to treat severe pain. PNS therapy uses electrodes placed along peripheral nerves to control pain. When the electrodes are in place, a weak electrical current is sent to the nerve.