Back pain affects an estimated 80% of American adults. Yet despite its prevalence and range of treatment options, many people with back pain never seek care.
Instead, they hope their backache will go away on its own. If it does, great! If it doesn’t dissipate after a couple of weeks, it’s time to consider treatment for back pain.
If you’re hesitant to seek medical care, don’t fret. The rise of holistic health care practices like ours at Integrated Body and Medicine in Highland, Indiana, means you have several noninvasive back pain treatments at your fingertips. Consider the following five to start.
1. Lifestyle changes
When you visit us at Integrated Body and Medical about back pain, one of the first things we do is ask about your day-to-day routine. Your lifestyle plays a major role in your risk of developing back pain and related problems, and lifestyle changes are the first defense against back pain.
For example, adding exercise to your day can significantly improve your pain levels. Strengthening your core and fixing your posture might be the only interventions you need. Eating noninflammatory foods, getting enough sleep, and maintaining a healthy weight also help stymie back pain.
2. Massage therapy
It’s no secret that a professional massage can leave you feeling refreshed. Massage therapy works by breaking up adhesions in your fascia, the connective tissue that holds all of your muscles, joints, organs, and bones in place.
Deep tissue massage may actually reach into your muscle fibers, but this type of massage can be too intense for people with preexisting pain. If your back pain seems to be associated with tightness, massage therapy might help.
Just keep in mind that the effects of massage therapy are temporary, and you’ll probably need regular massages to keep back pain at bay, unless you implement other treatment options.
3. Spinal adjustments
Chiropractors and other complementary medicine providers treat back pain (among other conditions) by adjusting your spine with careful spinal manipulations.
This type of treatment realigns your body, increases your range of motion, and allows your nervous system to do its job correctly.
The American College of Physicians has designated spinal manipulation as a generally safe and effective treatment for lower back pain, and it’s noninvasive, so you don’t need downtime.
4. Heat therapy
A little heat goes a long way when it comes to back pain. Resting against a heating pad, soaking in a sauna, or wearing a heated compression wrap may alleviate low-grade back pain.
Like massage therapy, heat therapy only provides temporary relief, so you may want to utilize heat therapy as an adjunct to something with longer term benefits, like physical therapy and lifestyle changes.
5. Physical therapy
If you have severe back pain that won’t let up no matter what you try, you might consider physical therapy. When you work with a physical therapist or rehabilitation specialist, you receive one-on-one guidance and completely individualized treatment to ensure you overcome your pain.
At Integrated Body and Medicine, our physical therapy treatment plans differ among patients, but usually include assisted stretching, supervised exercises, mobility work, and other techniques to help you recover.
Need help managing chronic back pain? See our pain management specialists at Integrated Body and Medicine. Schedule an appointment with us today by calling our Highland, Indiana, office or by booking an appointment through our online system.