(WellnessNova.com) - Lower back pain is a problem which many people face at some point during their lives. It can be disabling, and reduce your quality of life by a significant amount. However, there are ways to treat back aches without resorting to chemicals, pills or medical treatment.
Natural and homoeopathic remedies tend to have lots of added benefits; they can be cheaper, and much gentler on your system. If you are trying to live a natural and healthy lifestyle, then it makes sense to extend your beliefs to how you heal your body!
Here are some tips for treating your lower back using the best that nature has to offer.
1. Kill the Pain With Anti-inflammatory Foods and Natural Pain Relievers
Did you know that pineapples contain bromelain, a natural enzyme which reduces swelling? And that capsaicin compounds in chillies, when applied to the skin, reduce the sensitivity of your pain receptors? If you didn’t already know about comfrey root, then prepare to be amazed.
An ointment made from this plant-based extract used over the course of 5 days can decrease back pain by a staggering 95 percent! However, a warning; this ointment can’t be used for more than 10 days at a time, as it can be highly toxic over long periods.
Ask about these and other plant-based remedies at your local health food store.
2. Exercise Your way to a Stronger Back
It has been proven that keeping active is better for lower back pain than staying in bed and resting. Yoga and swimming are perfect ways to gently exercise your back and increase muscle support.
In fact, any exercise which increases balance and coordination is very helpful, say researchers at the University of Copenhagen. There are also specific stretches you can do to increase mobility, including moves like cat stretches and pelvic tilts. Search for instructional videos on Youtube, or buy a specialist book. Ideally, these should be practised every day.
3. Try the Alexander Technique
This is a method used to improve posture, taught by fully trained experts. It can be extremely useful for easing lower back pain.
A study of 500 British people suffering from chronic back pain proved that the Alexander Technique, taught on a one-to-one basis, can improve disability caused by back pain within a year.
Posture, in general, is very important for preventing and improving lower back pain. The National Back Pain Association (NBPA) advises sufferers to stand up straight and ensure that their head, neck, and shoulders are properly aligned. Sitting correctly is also important.
The idea of having needles pushed into your skin might make you feel a little uneasy, but acupuncture is an ancient method derived from Chinese medicine, which has often been proven to reduce pain.
All you have to do is get past your fear. Usually a patient might lie still while 5 to 20 needles are inserted, and rest for 20 minutes before having them removed. Go into it with an open mind — it might just be the key to relieving your pain if more conventional methods have previously failed.
5. Hot and Cold Treatment
This easy technique involves alternating hot and cold temperatures in order to stimulate blood flow and reduce inflammation in the area. Using both ice and heat, you can seriously reduce feelings of pain.
Run yourself a hot bath and relax, or place a hot water bottle against the affected area. After a time, switch to an ice pack or bag of frozen peas wrapped in a cloth. Keep switching between the two; this can really help with easing the pain.
6. Get a massage
Treat yourself! A weekly massage will lower your back pain and act as a great stress reliever and mood lifter.
The right therapist can target muscle strain and tension, and isolate specific regions which need to be stimulated in order to reduce tightness and pain.
7. Give Tai Chi a Try
Tai Chi is a slow, relaxing Chinese martial art, which can actually improve back pain. The intensity of pain is reported to decrease if you practise Tai Chi for 80 minutes per week.
8. Osteopathic Manual Therapy
This treatment involves a chiropractor or osteopath moving your back muscles with light pressure, resistance, and stretching techniques. It can create a reduction in pain of up to 30 percent in only 12 weeks.
If your lower back pain is bothering you, consider one of these all-natural methods. By choosing the right treatment, you can improve your condition without the use of pills. There are so many choices out there, so what are you waiting for?