Self-care for neck & back pain
Health & Wellness

Self-care for neck & back pain

Nobody likes to think about getting ill, after all, it’s something that happens to others, not you.

However, the sad truth is that 8 out of 10 people will be affected by back or neck pain at some point during their lives. In fact, 45% of people with back pain will have neck pain at the same time. That’s because the two areas of your body are closely connected.

Take The Right Precautions

If you have severe back or neck pain then it is always a good idea to have yourself checked out by a doctor. In fact, although it may seem extreme, visiting one of the best brain surgeon’s in the country will help to ensure there is nothing seriously wrong with your back, neck, or brain.

Once you’ve established that this isn’t something to be concerned about, you’ll need to develop a good self-care regime. Ideally, this will help to manage the pain and even prevent it from returning in the future.

Relax

Self-care for neck & back pain

When neck or back pain arrives suddenly it’s often because you lifted something incorrectly or twisted in an unusual way. The result is acute back pain and often an inability to straighten properly.

The first thing you need to do is stop doing the activity that you were just doing, you’ve damaged your muscles and they need time to recover.

You can then, if necessary, visit your doctor to confirm what pain-relief medications you can take. This is particularly relevant if you’re already on medication.

If you’re not on medication you can simply purchase over the counter medication. It is then important to relax for 2-3 days, this allows your muscles to relax and heal.

Ice It

For the first48 hours, you need to ice the area where it hurts. This reduces the blood flow to the area which reduces any inflammation and even gives pain relief. However, after 48 hours ice loses its effect, that’s when you need to switch to heat on the area as this will encourage blood flow and the healing process.

Move

After your initial relaxation, you need to start moving again, you should maintain normal activities as much as possible. Moving helps to keep your back supple and helps it to heal.

Obviously, don’t undertake strenuous exercise and ease back on any movement that causes intense pain. A little pain is actually a good thing.

Exercise

As your back or neck heals you’ll need to start thinking about the right exercises to stop the incident from happening again. Your doctor can help but, in general, the first step is to think about your posture. Whether sitting or standing, you need to maintain good posture as this will strengthen your spine and neck.

It’s also a good idea to start a program of light exercise, strength training, and light cardiovascular work can help to improve your core body strength which will reduce the likelihood of it happening again.

Don’t forget that if the pain hasn’t reduced after 2-3 days you should see a doctor, preferably one that specializes in neck and spine issues. 

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