5 Tips To Help You Address Your Chronic Back Pain Problem

5 Tips To Help You Address Your Chronic Back Pain Problem

Back Pain

A physical therapist could help you feel better, faster!

Did you know that approximately 80 percent of Americans have experienced (or will experience) back pain? It’s true! In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, around 1 in 5 people have chronic pain.

If you experience pain and discomfort on a daily basis, we encourage you to consult with a physical therapist who can work with you to address the symptoms and causes of your pain and help you gain better function.

Do you live with chronic back pain? Here are five of our top tips for handling it, all backed by research and relatively easy to implement!

Request an appointment with one of our skilled physical therapists at Bens Total Wellness Therapy today, and let us help you find true relief from your back pain.

Why does back pain occur?

Back pain” is an all-encompassing term used to describe a vast number of conditions that cause pain in the upper or lower back. Sports-related injuries, poor posture, and car accidents are just a few of the many ways that someone can develop back pain.

The most common cause of back pain is from sustaining an injury. This can happen in one of two ways – from an instant, sudden trauma, or from a repetitive-use injury that develops gradually over time.

Approximately one-quarter of U.S. adults reported having low back pain lasting at least one whole day in the past three months, and 7.6% reported at least one episode of severe acute low back pain within a one-year period.

More than two-thirds of back strains are caused by lifting and other exertions, such as pulling and pushing. Most cases of back pain are mechanical—meaning they are NOT caused by serious conditions, such as infection, fracture, or cancer.

Regardless of the reason for your back pain and discomfort, the good news is that there are several ways you can manage your problem!

Tips for managing back pain

1. Practice deep breathing exercises.

Deep breathing is beneficial to your health because it allows you to receive enough oxygen into your tissues to heal them.

The following exercise, known as four-square breathing or box breathing, has been shown to help manage pain. Sit in a comfortable position and follow these steps:

  • Breathe in through your nose for 4 counts.
  • Hold your breath for 4 counts.
  • Breathe out through your mouth for 4 counts.
  • Hold at the bottom of your exhalation for 4 counts, then repeat the cycle for 2 minutes.

Deep breathing also stimulates the area of the neural system that helps you relax, which is an excellent approach to relieve tension and pain.

2. Eat healthy food.

Yes, food is truly medicine! You are what you eat, and according to research, limiting overly processed foods and increasing your intake of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, high-quality protein, and healthy fats will help you feel better.

One explanation for this is that eating a varied diet rich in nutrient-dense meals guarantees that our tissues receive the raw ingredients they require to mend and repair.

Plus, when we minimize or eliminate foods in our diet that tend to promote inflammation, including alcohol and sugar, then pain our pain levels can naturally go down.

3. Study your posture.

Do you constantly slouch in your chair or hunch over your phone? Are you using proper body mechanics when picking up objects—whether it’s a heavy box, a pencil on the ground, or even your child or grandchild?

There are numerous ways we move our bodies on a daily basis that may not appear to be troublesome. However, if we regularly put our bodies through certain forms of strain, we might develop tissue damage and chronic discomfort.

See a physical therapist and have your posture, movement mechanics, and ergonomics evaluated. They can assist you in identifying patterns and behaviors that are causing your pain even if you aren’t aware of them.

4. Get a good night’s rest!

Sleep is necessary for your body’s healing and regeneration processes to run smoothly. It’s also a good technique to deal with stress.

Getting enough sleep can help you experience less discomfort for these reasons.

Is it difficult to fall or remain asleep while you’re in pain? To make it easier, use these sleep hygiene tips:

  • Sleep in a pitch black room with the bedroom temperature set to 65 to 68 degrees.
  • Dim the lights and power down your electronics for at least an hour before bedtime.
  • Go to bed at the same time every night, and wake up at the same time every morning (weekends and holidays included).

5. Exercise daily for at least 30 minutes a day.

It’s helpful to talk to a physical therapist if you have chronic pain before starting an exercise program.

Your physical therapist can provide services that naturally alleviate your pain and maximize your function so exercise is easier and safer for you to do.

Exercise can alleviate pain by increasing blood flow, stimulating the release of hormones and neurotransmitters that provide natural pain relief, and increasing joint strength and stability.

So get active—around 30 minutes of exercise on most or all days of the week.

Request an appointment today!

If you’re sick of dealing with your back pain on your own, know that help is available to you at Bens Total Wellness Therapy. If you are ready to schedule an appointment, contact our physical therapy clinic today!