Manage Your Back Pain

MANAGE YOUR BACK PAIN

The following advice is provided to help better manage and control your back pain. Please consult your physiotherapist if you do not understand any of the advice or it gives you an increase in your pain.

Maintain Good Posture:

Your Back prefers positions where your spine is in neutral and maintaining its normal curves.

  • When Standing- try to stand tall, as if a string was gently drawing you up from the crown of your head. Try keep weight evenly between both legs.

  • When Sitting- use a lumbar support or small cushion or rolled up towel to fill in the small curve between your lower back and chair. Sit your bottom well back in the chair with your feet resting flat on the floor. Soft, low chairs tend to be worse. Try not to cross your legs.

  • When Sleeping- try a pillow between your knees if lying on your side or pillow under your knees if lying on your back, to help support your back in a neutral position.

Try to Avoid:

  • Prolonged sitting. If you have to sit try and get up and change positions or stretch briefly every 15-20mins.

  • Bending from your back. Bend from hip and knees instead

  • Lifting heavy objects

  • Bending and twisting eg mopping or vacuuming. Again bend from knees and use your feet to twist rather than your back

Lifting:

When lifting (even light objects) bend at your knees and hips so you can keep your back straight. Use your leg muscles to help you lift the load, and brace with your deep tummy muscles to support your back.

Exercise:

  • Gentle regular exercise like walking or swimming is often beneficial. Start gentle and pace yourself, especially if you have not exercised for a long time.

  • High impact sport exercise like running and jumping sometimes needs to be avoided while your back pain is very acute.

  • Good core muscles have recently shown the importance of reducing lower back pain and reoccurrence of back pain.

  • Heat pack can be useful to reduce muscle spasm

  • Physiotherapist may suggest some exercises to do at home to help your pain

Tamika Fasoli - Physiotherapist @ ABSOLUTE