Saturday night I couldn’t get comfortable in bed. I was lying on my left side, and my left hip was aching so badly. I turned onto my right side, and my right hip hurt too. My hips ached all night, and I didn’t sleep well.
In the morning when I got out of bed, my back hurt too, and I had a strange pulling sensation radiating from my back into my hips and glutes. This radiating pain was new to me and definitely unpleasant!
It was Sunday morning, so an adjustment wasn’t an option, but thankfully a few things I did at home relieved the pain until I could get an adjustment.
I want to share these tips with you so that you know what to do if you start having back pain and can’t get an appointment with your chiropractor right away.
If you’ve ever sprained an ankle, you know that it feels stiff and swollen after it’s been immobile overnight or for long periods during the day. Similarly, your back is likely to feel stiffer if you avoid movement when you have back pain.
If you’re physically able to get up and move, set a timer to go off every 30 minutes. Every time the timer goes off, get up and walk around for a few minutes.
The old recommendation was to use ice for injuries within the first 48-72 hours after an injury and to use heat after the first 72 hours. Now there’s some research suggesting that we should steer clear of ice.
My recommendation is that if you’re in severe pain, you may use ice on the area over a thin layer of clothing for 5-10 minutes every couple of hours for pain relief and reduction of swelling. If the pain isn’t severe, and there’s no swelling, stick to heat.
Moist heat is better than dry heat. To make an inexpensive moist heat pack, cut off a pair of panty hose at the knee, fill the leg and foot portion with uncooked rice, and tie off the open end. Microwave it for a minute or two, and apply it to the area that hurts over a thin layer of clothing.
Limit the use of heat to 15 minutes every few hours.
There are many topical products on the market. I prefer to make my own blend to avoid many of the ingredients in store-bought products that have been linked to hormone imbalances, reproductive health problems, and cancer. That’s a topic for another day though!
My personal favorite is one I make myself with organic sunflower oil and Young Living essential oils (PanAway, copaiba, and peppermint essential oils).
I make a blend in a roller bottle and apply as needed for a soothing aromatic experience.
Tight muscles and trigger points contribute to back pain. A foam roller, tennis ball, or lacrosse ball are great tools to relieve tight muscles and trigger points.
For relief at home, lean on the foam roller or ball to find tight muscles and trigger points. Apply gentle, steady pressure to trigger points for 15 seconds. Then roll over the tight area a few times.
If your chiropractor or physical therapist has given you exercises and/or stretches for your back pain in the past, do those stretches and exercises.
If this is a new problem you haven’t had before, there’s a chance that the exercises and stretches won’t be good for the new problem. You can always try them to see if they relieve the pain until you can get an appointment to see your chiropractor.
If the pain radiates into your legs, you should avoid exercises that cause the radiating pain in your legs to get worse or travel farther down your leg.
I hope these 5 Things I Did To Relieve My Own Back Pain have been helpful.
If your pain doesn’t go away within a couple of days, or if you’ve had similar episodes in the past, schedule an appointment with your chiropractor. These conditions typically respond the best to chiropractic treatment before they become chronic.
Lastly, if you haven’t been to a chiropractor before and would like to find out whether chiropractic care is right for you, schedule your complimentary consultation today!