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Monday, March 6, 2017

Simple Ways to Relieve Back Pain

According to the American Chiropractic Association, more than 31 million Americans suffer from back pain. That’s a lot of bad backs.

The most common type is lower back pain, and it can be caused by everything from too much or too little activity.

If your back pain doesn’t have you hunched over, or isn’t a result of a serious injury, try these simple things to soothe it:

1. Book a massage

Research shows that pressure receptors in the skin respond favorably to another person’s touch. Massages also reduce stress and stress-related hormones like cortisol, releasing tension and pain throughout the body.

2. Roll with it

Use a foam roller a few times a day to loosen muscles and ease tightness. Roll it under your back in the morning after waking up to open up the spine, and again at night before bedtime for one final soothing stretch.

3. Sweat it out

Research shows at least 30 minutes of aerobic exercise several times a week, such as running, cycling, or swimming, can alleviate lower back pain by up to 28 percent.  A good workout gets blood flowing, muscles warmed up, and joints lubricated all efficiently and simultaneously so there is less chance for pain and tightness.

4. Be mindful

A few minutes spent each day either meditating, or centering yourself with some concentrated relaxation, can help reduce pain.  Experts say clearing your mind also helps with pain perception. Reading, listening to music, or spending time doing what you enjoy puts you in a relaxed state of mind.

5. Stretch

A regular stretching routine, or practicing yoga, has been shown to ease back pain. The more that your back muscles are conditioned and limber, the better they will be at resisting the familiar and frequent tightness brought on by inactivity.

If your back pain is ongoing and severe, please contact us for an appointment to rule out an underlying or more serious condition.

(Adapted from Men’s Health)

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