Monday, March 23, 2009


Treatments for acute lower back painAcute low back pain is pain that has lasted less than 3 months. If you have recently started to have low back pain, there's a good chance that it will get better within a few weeks. Most lower back pain will improve if you take the following steps:

For the first day or two, rest in a comfortable position. Try lying on your side with a pillow between your knees. Or lie on your back on the floor with a pillow under your knees. Do not stay in one position for too long, though. Every 2 or 3 hours, take a short walk (about 10 to 20 minutes), then find a comfortable position to rest again.

Take pain medicine if needed, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or medicines that reduce pain, swelling, and irritation, including ibuprofen (such as Advil or Motrin) or naproxen (such as Aleve or Naprosyn). These medicines usually work best if you take them on a regular schedule instead of waiting until the pain is severe.

Try using a heating pad on a low or medium setting, or a warm shower, for 15 to 20 minutes every 2 to 3 hours. Or you can buy single-use heat wraps that last up to 8 hours. You can also try an ice pack for 10 to 15 minutes every 2 to 3 hours. There is not strong evidence that either heat or ice will help, but you can try them to see if they help. You may also want to try switching between heat and cold.

As soon as possible, get back to your normal activities. Movement helps your muscles stay strong. Staying in bed for more than 1 or 2 days can actually make your problem worse.



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