Low Back Pain: Causes, Symptoms and Treatments
What is Low Back Pain?
Low back pain is pain that occurs in your back anywhere between your ribs and the top of your legs. It comes in several forms and sensations and ranges from mild to debilitating. Almost all individuals will experience lower back pain at some point in their lives. Most will recover without formal treatment.
What Causes Low Back Pain?
There are numerous causes of low back pain. The most common cause is overuse or strain. People who live sedentary lifestyles, such as those who work in office environments, are more likely to experience lower back pain. Aging, arthritis or illness can also present itself as lower back pain, as well as spinal conditions or injury. In some cases, the specific cause of lower back pain can’t be identified.
What are the Symptoms of Low Back Pain?
Lower back pain can present itself with diverse symptoms. Pain can be sudden or gradual, get better or worse with time, and respond positively or negatively to movement. The most common symptoms of low back pain are:
- Dull back pain
- Sharp back pain
- Muscle spasms
- Leg pain, tingling, or numbness
In some cases, the following symptoms in conjunction with low back pain may indicate a more severe condition:
- Incontinence / loss of bowel control
- Weakness or numbing in both legs
Lower back pain symptoms vary in location and severity, depending on the cause. In the majority of cases, you can eliminate low back pain symptoms with preventative measures and at-home care.
Self-Care Solutions for Low Back Pain
Most back pain will resolve on its own within a few weeks. Many self-care solutions can prevent or alleviate lower back pain. However, what works for one person may not work for another. You may need to try more than one solution before eliminating your low back pain.
Walking & Low Impact Exercise: One of the simplest ways to relieve lower back pain is to go for a walk and make light exercise a regular part of your routine. Exercise helps the blood circulate through your body and can strengthen your muscles. Other low impact activities that can help low back pain include swimming, water aerobics, stationary or elliptical cycling, and gentle yoga.
Posture & Core Strengthening: You can prevent lower back pain through posture and core strength improvements. Core stabilization results in stronger muscles and better posture and balance. A strong core body has a better defense against low back pain and can help mitigate symptoms. You can perform core strengthening exercises at home or with a physiotherapist.
Rest: Resting for a couple of days can help alleviate the symptoms of some acute lower back pain. If this is the case, symptom relief will occur within the first 48 hours. If pain persists after that time, you may require additional self-care options.
Side Sleeping: Sleeping on your side can help prevent and alleviate lower back pain. Use pillows or supports to help you stay in position throughout the night.
Hot or Cold Therapy: Using ice packs or heating pads can relieve your back pain. If swelling has occurred, start with cold therapy until the swelling is gone. If no swelling is present, use whichever temperature feels most effective.
Ergonomics: An ergonomic setup can help prevent and alleviate lower back pain symptoms, particularly those incurred while working for long periods of time at a desk. Ergonomic setups may include standing desks, chairs, stools, and ergonomic accessories to properly position and support the body.
Relax The Back Products for Lower Back Pain
Relax The Back are experts in treating and preventing low back pain and ergonomic issues. We have several products that can help prevent and remedy low back pain through proper support and alignment. Here are some of the solutions that can help address spinal-health:
- Ergonomic Furniture: If your low back pain is caused or made worse by sedentary work, then ergonomic office equipment can help. Chairs, desks, footstools, and accessories such as keyboards and mice, all come in ergonomic forms that correct alignment and alleviate spinal and joint pressure.
- Contour Pillows: A contour pillow can help you sleep comfortably on your side to alleviate back pain. Wake up feeling refreshed and healthy.
- Postural Supports: You can use back and seat cushions to support your back and prevent lower back pain. Use these supports at the office, in the car or at home.