The older we get, the more our bodies seem to believe that they don't need to keep working as we intend them to. The other day, I sneezed and heard something go "click" in my neck and then I was sore for two days.
It's ridiculous how quickly our bodies start to think they can get lazy on us, but what to you do when these things happen and you can't immediately get to a doctor?
Throwing your back out can vary from being mildly uncomfortable to completely debilitating depending on what you've done and the type of issue you've ended up with.
A pulled muscle may hurt, but a slipped disk or an injured ligament can render you immobile. But there are a few things you can do when you do get those initial, more minor pains, that can help you recover quicker. Or, at the bare minimum will help you find some comfort until you can get to the doctor.
1. Sit Up Straight
You've got to protect your back once it is in a delicate state, and the best way to do that is to make sure you aren't slouching at all.
You want to make sure that your spine is aligned properly, in what they call a "neutral position." This happens when your shoulders are squared over your hips. You'll feel as though you could stand flat against a wall and have both your hips and back touch.
You core muscles will pull back towards your spine, and that will help prevent you from over-arching.
You don't want to push it more than you need to. If you hurt it working out or moving something heavy, give yourself time to heal before getting back at it. A few days of relaxation can do wonders.
The best thing you can do for your back, especially if it's a muscle spasm, is to take it easy and give it time to heal. Whether it's by laying flat, avoiding heavy lifting, or keeping yourself from twisting, the muscle needs to relax for it to stop hurting.
3. Drink Water
While it sounds a little weird that water would help your back, but staying hydrated will keep the blood circulating through your body well, which is necessary to the healing process.
A minimum of 8 glasses per day is required when it comes to keeping those soft tissues healthy, so make sure you stay hydrated even when your back is healthy to prevent it from going out in the future.
4. Gentle Exercise
After a few days of resting, you're going to want to get back to a physical routine to make sure your muscles don't weaken too much. Take it easy, but you want to build up the muscles in your back and core to help prevent future back injuries.
Also, exercise releases endorphins, which are known to reduce the sensation of pain naturally.
There are a few simple stretches you can do to help ease your pain. Even just reaching your arms above your head will help lengthen your spine and maybe release some of the pressure that's building up.
Stretching out the strained muscles can help to ease and spasms or tightness and is an easy and quick solution that can provide you a lot of relief.