Emergency Measures For Back Pain
Emergency Measures for Back Pain
If you get an acute episode of back pain, the following advice should help you in the short term, however if your pain persists for more than a few days, it's imperative you seek medical advice.
Chronic pain is often pain not treated appropriately at the acute stage. (Please don't let yourself get to the chronic pain stage just for the sake of not asking for medical help quickly enough)...
Don't lie in bed unless the pain is so bad, you don't have any other choice. Even then, keep the bed rest to a minimum. Ok I'm mean, but bed rest for back problems can often make them worse. So try and keep moving as much as you can.
Use pain killing gel or simple pain killers or anti inflammatories such as paracetamol or Ibuprofen. (Check with your pharmacist for something suitable, and please be careful if you're pregnant, asthmatic or suffering indigestion)...
Applying an icepack to the affected area is a super idea. It soothes the pain, and helps reduce inflammation. (A bag of frozen peas is a useful alternative).
If more of a chronic pain, a warm shower or bath will help as will a hot water bottle. Always remember though to make sure your hot water bottle (or frozen peas etc) are covered with a towel or something, (Don't want you getting burns).
It's imperative you get a diagnosis for any type of back pain. Often when people visit a doctor or specialist, it's found (after investigations) that although your spine is moaning and complaining, there isn't anything serious underlying the pain, however there are some "red flag" symptoms you ignore at your peril...
Pain after a major injury
Pain that never disappears, or gets worse
Numbness, pins and needles or weakness in your legs. You would need to see your doctor urgently if this was progressive, situated around your bum or affecting both your legs...
Difficulty in passing urine or opening your bowels. (Again cause to see your doctor immediately).
Pain and or numbness down the back of the leg to your foot. (May be indicative of sciatica).
Back pain which is associated with pain in your tummy or chest.
Backache plus weight loss, sweating episodes or general feelings of being unwell.
Backache during or after any treatment received for cancer.
To avoid obvious causes of back pain,
Check your bed...
Is it properly supporting your back? (Please don't tell me you have back problems, and you're sleeping on a health bed), they are far too hard. Your bed needs to be comfortable and supportive.
Ensure you can reach the steering wheel as well as the foot pedals, gear stick etc comfortably.
Use non slip mats in the bathroom, Avoid bending to do any household tasks (Squat), Ensure work surfaces are waist height. Sit down to peel the veg...
Ensure your ironing board is at waist height, and do just small amounts frequently. Ensure the iron is not too heavy for you.
Kneel when making the beds or cleaning the bath, squat when emptying/loading the washer/dryer etc. Be extra careful (Again squat), if you have a very low oven...
Keep frequently used items in cupboards at waist height, and less frequently used in the harder to reach cupboards.
Using these tips will help to keep your back healthy and pain free
About the Author
Kim is a Back Care Advisor working in the UK for a large hospital Trust. She is passionate about Back Care, and can be found at www.backpain-free.com and www.nursing-hints.com
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