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a man with lower back pain.

Lower Back Pain, Sciatica, Bad Discs: How and Things to Fix Them Yourself

Lower back pain is no joke. As a writer, I have experienced it first hand. Mine was as a result of sitting long hours each day, little exercise, and bad lifting habits. And maybe age. Experienced it in form of mild pain, numbness, to excruciating pain. The pain extended to my left leg. Sleeping was a task, waking up a tougher task. Sitting and moving felt like grinding the bones of my spine against each other. It felt like someone had stabbed me with a knife and left it there to torment me. At 30.

If you are in a hurry and looking for products to help with your lower back pain, here is a quick list we’ll review at the bottom of this article:

Best Heating Pad: FCL natural Relief Heating Pad

Best Lower Back Massager: Zyllion Shiatsu Back Massager

Best Pain Reliever (gel): Neuropathy Nerve Pain Relief Cream

Best Acupressure Mat: Spoonk Acupressure Eco Mat

Best Acupressure Back Stretcher: Chifit Back Pain Relief Back Stretcher

Best Lower Backpain Chair: Kneeling Chair with Orthopedic Back Pain Seat

Lower Back Pain; Interacting With Back Problem Specialists

The most horrifying part about back pain is that it has no definite cure. It depends on who you approach for help; physical therapists, back pain doctors, spine specialists, all have their way to approach back problems. I got the feeling that backpain is mysterious, even to professionals.

Some back pain professionals will advise you to find ways to live with the pain and inability. Others will suggest anti-inflammatory medication until you feel better. There’s a wide range of recommendations for lower back pain out there including acupuncture, exercise, massage, surgery, chiropractic… you name it. As mentioned earlier it depends on who you meet.

Through this pain, I’ve researched the subject of back pain widely and came to the conclusion that there’s something I can do to feel better and heal. And help you overcome your situation as well. Though a complex and mysterious subject, it’s still simple enough for a commoner like yourself to fight the pain and get your life back.

Dr. Bookspan made a lot of sense for me in this article: Fixing your own back pain.

Lower Back Pain Causes

In my case, sitting down, lifting heavy things once in a while, and little care for my health caused this back problem. Your case might be different. Perhaps you lift wrong, sit wrong, stand wrong, bend wrong, eat wrong, got an accident, or something else.

People do all kinds of things that cause harm to their back. The worst part is that we do this continually, each day. As time goes by, you compound your condition from a tired back into a painful back problem. Some of the common risk factors of lower back pain include:

Lack of Physical Activity – If your physical exercises don’t reach back muscles, they become weak, and become painful with slight strain on your back.

Wrong Lifting – If you use your back to lift things instead of using your legs, your back feels the pressure resulting in pain.

Age – Most lower back pain is reported in people 30 years or older. The older you get the more prone to back pain you become.

Illnesses – You can get lower back pain with some types of diseases like cancer and arthritis

Mental problems – Anxiety and depression contribute to the risk of getting lower back pain.

Smoking – If you smoke, you are at a higher risk of getting back problems. It reduces blood flow to the spinal cord and the coughing prompted by smoking causes disc herniation.

Being overweight – Carrying around excess body weight puts pressure on your back, leading to back pain.

When back pain hits, it could manifest as any of the following:

  • Ligament strain – If you continually lift heavy stuff with the support of your back or make unexpected movements, you strain your muscles or ligaments located along your spine. When the ligament strain continues, you’ll experience muscle spasms.
  • Arthritis – The pain in your back might manifest as Osteoarthritis. This happens when the space around your spinal code narrows. This condition is called spinal stenosis.
  • Osteoporosis – In situations where your bones get brittle and porous, you might get fractures that are painful.
  • Bulging or ruptured spinal discs – Discs cushion the bones of your spine. These discs contain soft materials that can swell and rupture to press on nearby nerves, causing pain. Sometimes bulging or ruptured discs might not be painful for some people and can only be diagnosed through X-rays.

Lower Back Pain and Discs

What are Discs?

The back bone is made of a chain of bones that have little fibrous cushioning material in between them. This system of bones and cushions runs from the back of your head (neck) to your lower back. It’s the fibrous cushions that we call discs. Discs are also present in your knees, between your jaw bones, and other parts (joints) of your body.

Because of discs, your bones don’t grind against each other and your joints are armed to absorb shock during body movements. For some reason, these discs break down and herniate.

How Discs Degenerate and Herniate

Most activities we do cause strain, weakness, and stress to our backs. Continually positioning your back the wrong way crushes your backbone discs and moves them out of place toward the back (what is known as disc herniation). With time, the discs squash and break down (what is known as disc degeneration).

As disc degeneration and herniation happens, they press on nearby nerves, causing pain to your back and the pain flows to your leg (a condition known as sciatica). Bad body postures and your body weight puts pressure on your back, big enough to cause damage like a single accident.

How is this possible? When you visit a dentist to correct crooked teeth positions, they’ll use braces that pull and push your teeth in the right position over time. The same happens to your back bones and discs over time.

The good news is that the same way your discs degenerated or slipped out of place, they can get back in place. Your lower back pain can heal, sciatica can go away. All you need is to correct how you sit, bend, exercise, and live your daily life. Your back pain is not a life sentence.

Lower Back Pain More than Disc Problem?

While herniated or degenerative discs cause pain, they are not always the cause of pain for everyone. An MRI or X-ray scan might show damage to the discs but your pain might be coming from muscle stains and tiredness.

Also, some back pain problems have nothing to do with hernia or disc degeneration. Sometimes it might be a type of cancer, uterine fibroids, arthritis, pregnancy, ovarian cysts, kidney, and bladder problems.

It’s important for you to visit a doctor so that they can diagnose your situation and suggest the best way to treat it.

How to Live Daily Life to Prevent Lower Back Problems

The first step to stop ruining your discs is understanding that you must change your lifestyle. Here’s a list of things you want to do on a daily basis to get back in shape.

  1. Don’t “Round” When You Sit – Sit straight comfortably and as naturally as possible without straining your muscles. Don’t curve forward while sitting.
  2. Avoid Sitting When You Wake Up – Turn on your stomach to get out of bed. Avoid sitting.
  3. Reduce the Times You Bend – Some people bend over hundreds of times each day (the wrong way). Count how many times you do it and reduce the number. Also, be conscious of your bending to do it right each time.
  4. Squat to Lift Stuff – Squat any time you want to pick something from the ground. You can also raise your back leg and bend over to pick light stuff off the ground. A lunge can also help.
  5. Get a Raised Workstation – You want your computer to be raised so you are not curling downward to work. Your TV should also be moved higher.
  6. Stand Using Your Muscles – Don’t use your joints to hold your body. Use your muscles instead. Doing this helps to exercise and strengthen your muscles. Maintain a proper (natural) posture all the time.
  7. Avoid High Heels – You want to wear comfortable and flat shoes and not high heels that will add strain to your back.
  8. Don’t Sit for Long Hours – If your work requires sitting, try and stand after every thirty minutes to stretch and move around.
  9. Lose Weight – If you are overweight, find ways to lose your weight and be fit. Apart from eating right take time to do physical exercises that will help you lose weight and gain strong muscles.
  10. Exercise your Abdomen and Buck Muscles – You want your back muscles and abdomen to be strong enough to hold you when stand and sit.
  11. Sleep on a Firm Surface
  12. Stop Smoking – Smoking causes coughs and contains nicotine that hinders bone healing cell production which is crucial for the healing of your back bones and discs.

How to Manage Your Lower Back Pain

Don’t Take the Back Pain Lying Down – When lower back pain strikes, it’s tempting to lie down so it gets better. But that’s a bad idea. You want to be in motion. Continue with your daily tasks. Stand up. Stretch. Doing this increases blood flow in the hurting area, which speeds up healing as well as helps strengthen your muscles.

Massage Therapy – Schedule a massage therapy session for your back. Ensure the person is a professional to give you meaningful massage sessions.

Over the Counter Pain Killers -Painkillers and anti-inflammatory medication can help you manage your back pain. Ask your chemist what works for your situation.

Treatment Options for Lower Backpain

Home remedies might not work. After trying to get relief for a few weeks, consult a back specialist. They’ll suggest a combination of treatment options to help. Based on your symptoms, they might suggest medications, use of medical appliances, and/or physical therapy. Your physician will determine the dosage and application of the recommendations they provide.

  • Medications – Anti-inflammatory drugs, pain killers, muscle relaxants, narcotic drugs, steroids, corticosteroid, among others.
  • Physical therapy – Massage, strengthening exercises, spinal manipulation, and stretching.
  • Surgery – If your situation is severe, you might need surgery. It’s often the last resort. Depending on your situation, you might need discectomy, foraminotomy, intradiscal electrothermal therapy, nucleoplasty, ablation, spinal fusion, spinal laminectomy.

When to See a Doctor

So when should you see a doctor because of your back pain? Visit your doctor as soon as you can to be diagnosed. Your physician will conduct a physical exam to find out if the pain is affecting your motion. They’ll check your responses and reflexes to provide you the best treatment options. Unless you have symptoms that are concerning, you should get better within a few days to weeks.

If you decide to use self care treatments but fail to resolve your condition, ensure a physician sees you. Some symptoms require immediate expert intervention. Get professional help if you have any of the following symptoms.

  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Weakness
  • Losing bowel control
  • More pain after home remedies

Useful Inventions for Lower Back Pain

Just like any other field in the medical world, lower back pain has got inventions targeting to alleviate the pain and give you a normal life. Here are some of the top inventions you should invest in. The best part is that you can order this on Amazon and receive your package within minutes.

The Best Heating Pad: FCL natural Relief Heating Pad

Unlike some heating pads that produce dry heat, this one produces moisture heat that is effective in relieving pain. So if you are looking for a heating pad that’s able to relieve the pain and tension in your lower back, get FCL natural Relief Heating Pad. The best part is that you don’t have to manually add water to the unit to enjoy its therapeutic moist heat. It draws moisture from the surroundings.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • Moist heat reaches the depths of your muscle tissues of your back
  • All you need is press a button and relax, leave all the work to this product
  • Soothes mind and body increasing the chances of your back healing
  • Big enough to wrap around you – a luxurious product for maximum results
  • Save 15% for every purchase
The Best Heating Pad: FCL natural Relief Heating Pad
FCL natural Relief Heating Pad moisture pad

The Best Lower Back Pain Massager: Zyllion Shiatsu Back Massager

The incomparable Zyllion Shiatsu back massager is what you need if you’re looking to self-massage. With this, you can relieve muscle tension in your lower back area and soothe your pain. It’s not solely designed for the lower back; the massage nodes can move up and down your back for a whole massage experience. The three levels of vibration add to comfort and effectiveness. You can customize this product to suit your needs if you are between 5’2” – 6″.

With this device you are safe with its 15-minutes shut off mechanism protects against damage and saves you on energy. It’s not the kind that will overheat and harm you.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • Lifetime support from the vendor
  • Custom level massage specific to your lower back problem
  • Safety temperature controls to protect you, the user
  • Usable with any type of chair in your home
The Best Lower Back Pain Massager: Zyllion Shiatsu Back Massager.
Zyllion Shiatsu back massager

Best Pain Reliever (cream): Neuropathy Nerve Pain Relief Cream

If your lower back feels stiff and sore, we’ve got the best pain reliever cream for you; Neuropathy Nerve Pain Relief Cream. Its unique formula design works within minutes to eliminate that irritation in your lower back. The formula is concentrated so that you can apply just a little balm for maximum pain relief. You can count on this product to last long until your back feels better. Also, apply it to other areas of your body.

“This product works great for back pain. The topical creams I used before smelled horrible and left an oily residue on my skin. The packaging also looks good…”

This is feedback from a user on Amazon.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • You get great value for money because a little application does the job
  • Might be enough until your lower back heals
  • Can be used for multiple pain causing problems including joint pain and damaged nerves pain
  • Confidence that it’s designed by medical practitioners that understand your back pain
Neuropathy Nerve Pain Relief Cream for back pain
Neuropathy Nerve Pain Relief Cream

Best Acupressure Mat: Spoonk Acupressure Eco Mat

Get a massage and physical therapy at home with Spoonk Acupressure Eco Mat. This acupressure mat has more than 6000 stimulation points that cover most of your back to relieve pressure, muscle tension and pain. You don’t have to be professionally trained to use this mat. All you need to do is lie down on it with your back and enjoy what it has to offer. This product helps to improve blood flow in the back tissues for quick recovery.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • The vendor provides amazing customer care to help you enjoy all the mat can offer
  • You cut down on therapy and massage costs with this product
  • Your tensed muscles and aching back gets relief over time
  • Little to no activity on your end, providing you maximum comfort and relief
Best Acupressure Mat: Spoonk Acupressure Eco Mat
Spoonk Acupressure Eco Mat

Best Acupressure Back Stretcher: Chifit Back Pain Relief Back Stretcher

Chifit Back Pain Relief Back Stretcher is what you need if your lower back aches and feels stiff. It stretches and unwinds your lumbar back into position and enables you to relax and realign your discs into position. You can target pressure and pain points on your back and achieve quick results with this product. The unit is designed in a way that allows you to comfortably carry it around.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • Adjustable curve that helps you realign your lumbar back at your own rate
  • Muscle pain relief and relaxation thanks to the acupressure grants
  • Compact design that you can move around with for travel
  • Quick results to realign your spine; you’ll start feeling better with a single use!
Best Acupressure Back Stretcher: Chifit Back Pain Relief Back Stretcher.
Chifit Back Pain Relief Back Stretcher

Best Backpain Chair: Kneeling Chair with Orthopedic Back Pain Seat

If your bad posture is responsible for the lower pain, you should get Kneeling Chair with Orthopedic Back Pain Seat. It’s backless and designed to train your back and leg muscles to hold your body weight. The chair integrates stimulation points that help relieve muscle tension and increase blood circulation to help heal your hurting back. The knee pad is well padded and extremely comfortable for the user. You can adjust it to precisely fit next to your desk so you can work without straining.

What You’ll Enjoy

  • A comfortable chair that’s geared towards helping with your posture
  • Helps you get rid of your back pain, sciatica and reverse your condition
  • An adjustable seat that you can personalize to fit your needs
Best Backpain Chair: Kneeling Chair with Orthopedic Back Pain Seat.

No More Lower Back Pain

The biggest move you can take to correct your lower back pain problems is to identify and eliminate the reason behind it. Notice your posture and behavior. Use the principles and products we suggest in this article to gradually reduce your pain. It might take a few days or a few weeks to get back your old strong back. If your lower back pain persists, look for help from a medical practitioner.

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