Back pain isn’t an uncommon experience for most people and likely chance is, you’ve experienced back pain without entirely realizing what it is. This case would be a minor pain, and these typically pass on their own. As you get older though, you may encounter some more severe timely back pain that’s hard not to notice. This is where you should start directing your attention to your back rather than waiting it out.
The older you get, the less metabolism you have and the weaker your immune system becomes. This also means that minor pains you were once capable of handling can suddenly become unbearable.
Common Causes of Lower Back Pain
Before jumping to medications and treatments for healing your aches, understand first what makes your back hurt. There’s always a reason and knowing that reason can sometimes help you make a better decision for you, your health and your back.
The truth about back pain is that there are many different ways back pain can occur. Finding the origin of the pain can lead you to multiple conclusions. Some of the mentioned causes can strike pain in your lower back but once again, it can be tricky to pinpoint which one it really is.
Some pains can be acute, which are pains that last for less than six weeks. If the pain lasts for longer than six weeks, then it’s identified as chronic pain and requires consultation with a doctor to check severity.
The listed below are all acute pains that can comfortably be dealt with at home.
This type of pain is caused by the tissues in between your joints coming off. They come off due to deterioration over time. Eventually, after being used for so long the tissues come undone and the slipping discs start brushing against your nerves located near your hip or lower back.
This is a relatively common situation in which a muscle located in the lower back or thighs cramps when performing an excessive act such as heaving a heavy weight. This type of pain usually subsides after two weeks but in more extreme pulls to the muscle, you can feel it for longer.
This pain occurs because your sciatic nerve has been disturbed. Sciatica can actually arise due to herniated discs slipping and brushing against the long sciatic nerve.
This is a general term, not a medical one. There are various spinal issues that can occur over time and any of these are liable to cause some type of pain in either your lower or upper back.
- Spinal Stenosis – This describes an issue where your spinal cord narrows, applying pressure on both your spine and nerves.
- Spondylolisthesis – This is an occurrence where one bone in your spine pushes either forward or backward.
- Inflation near the Sacroiliac Joint – This is where your pelvis and spine meet. The pain from here isn’t immense, but it lies in a critical position and is better tended to before anything else can develop.
Back pain that must be addressed can be determined if these following symptoms are repetitively detected with no further improvement in the pain:
- Muscle aches in your lower back and/or upper legs
- Growing pain down your legs with a puncturing feeling
- If pain deepens when bending, walking or standing up
The best, easiest and most natural way to cure these cramps is by moving your body gently or stretching. Stretching is a great way to help soothe your pain and even relieve it. It’s not hard to do, and once you’ve done it you’ll feel relaxed as the pain steadily fades away.
Why Stretches can Help Ease Lower Back Pain?
Firstly, stretching will only work if you commit to it, continuously stretching for a consistent amount each day and doing it properly. When it comes to helping your well-being, there are no cheats or shortcuts.
While stretching, you keep your body in action. These moves can be intricate, or simple, but so long as they’re keeping your spine, muscles, and bones in motion you can rest assured your body is happy and healthy.
Most deterioration, issues, and problems that occur in your back are steadily created when you’re idle. Sitting in a chair for 8 hours every day, taking long naps throughout the day and then doing intense chores is the perfect equation for back issues. When you’re not moving, your body isn’t moving and therefore simply collecting dust.
Stretching helps create resilience in your back muscles and bones, making them capable of handling more strain and pressure. You’ll be able to perform daily tasks with much more ease if you have a routine of stretching for at least 15 minutes every day.
Not only will it relieve back pain, but also help strengthen your back. It’ll help prevent you from encountering similar and new pains alike in the future. The more stretches you’re capable of doing continuously the stronger and more supportive your back becomes with increased flexibility.
9 Stretches For Lower Back Pain Relief Step by Step
Doing stretches is good, but it isn’t enough if you’re attempting to conquer your pains. Once your pains have been alleviated, you can commit to a variety of stretches but until that doesn’t happen, here are some stretches to help lift the pain from your back.
You’ll find that most of these poses are yoga-based since they work very gently on your body but very effectively with great benefits. Never rush into these poses and take your time. Rushing into any pose can harm or stretch a muscle too quickly, ripping internal tissues.
The Child Pose
In this pose, you start out on all fours. Have your legs tucked under your torso, and stretch your arms out ahead of you until they’re straight, palms spread on the floor. Touching your stomach to the floor, hold your head down and maintain this pose for 20-30 seconds. This is a basic move and after doing it once, you’ll feel the stretch in your back as it falls down form an arch to a more elongated bridge.
This stretch helps in relieving your back from being constantly contracted, pulling at both your lower and upper back relatively closer to your shoulder bones.
This pose deals directly with your lower back, tackling the weak points first. You start lying on your back, knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Open your arms in a T position, making sure your shoulders are touching the floor. Keeping your back straight on the floor, roll both of your knees to one side, holding this position for 20-30 seconds. Do the same on the other side and repeat this movement 4-5 times on each side.
This pose helps loosen everything from your lower to legs and all in between. It’s great to pursue this move before and after your pain is relieved, it keeps further pains at bay.
This pose is comparatively calmer than most and great for beginners. Lying on your stomach, with this pose, your legs, and torso are flat on the floor, arms propped on your elbows. Lift your head and upper back straight, keeping your stomach flat on the floor and hold this pose for 20-30 seconds.
It takes time, but the light burn will come once you’ve held the pose long enough. This pose loosens your lower back, hips and legs. It’s also a great way to work on the flexibility of your spine.
Legs Against the Wall
Another easy beginner move, all that you’re required to do in this pose is lie on your back and prop your legs up against the wall straight. Keeping your hands by your side and ensuring your butt is touching the wall, you’ll gain greater flexibility in your hamstrings. It may not directly tackle your lower back, but the results do heavily relieve your back and legs.
Since this is an easier pose, hold your legs against the wall for 30-60 seconds for better, longer-lasting relief.
Cat-Camel Back Stretch
Start this pose on your hands and knees. Keep your back straight for a moment, then arch your back, letting your head roll underneath your shoulders. Hold this pose for 20-30 seconds, keeping sure that both your arms and legs are straight. With this pose, your bottom, legs, and arms shouldn’t move at all. Only your shoulders and back are being twisted.
With this pose, your spine will be strengthened along with all your abdominal muscles. This will keep your core sturdy and flexible when working.
With this pose, your aim is to expand the range of motion your legs and lower back reach. This also helps in strengthening your knees and tightening your chest overall when placed under pressure.
Lie down flat on the floor in the start, legs straight and arms to your side. Lift your legs so that your legs meet your chest by touch, and hold your arms over your knees to keep them locked in place. Hold this pose for 20-30 seconds and then release your arms and legs. Let them fall straight, arms to your side and legs parallel to one another. Repeat the first move 4-5 times.
Downward Dog Pose
With this pose, the goal is to loosen your entire body, which will immensely help your back along with legs. This pose doesn’t focus primarily on your abs, but instead all the contracting muscles that surround them.
Start this pose on all fours, hands out flat and knees underneath your hips. Slowly and steadily, lift your core until your weight is shifted from your knees to your feet. Lift your bottom up until it is higher than the rest of your body. Your legs and arms both should be stretched out to the max.
This pose should be done very slowly as all of your body is manipulated and stretched. If you cannot push yourself to stretch out your entire body, then try first lifting only your body without straightening your limbs. This pose is held for 20-30 seconds and if you’re new to this pose, don’t try repeating it right after.
A great way to relieve your back is by working on your hamstrings. This doesn’t directly work on your lower back, but the long run effect is brilliant. When your legs are stiff, then your back is no good while bending or running. Loosening your hamstrings allows your back less pressure and more relief when your legs handle more of the strain.
Start off by sitting on the floor, one leg stretched out fully while the other is tucked into your lap. Extend your arm over the leg you’ve stretched until you feel a pull in your thigh and pelvic area. Don’t pull this muscle too far, trying your capability. This is very dangerous if you pull it. Hold this pose for 10-20 seconds, then alternate your legs. Do this 5 times on each leg.
Hip Flexor Stretch
This pose also doesn’t directly deal with your back but instead helps align your hips and make them more flexible. Quite similar to the hamstring stretch, the stronger your hips are and the more strain they can support, the more weight and pressure is taken off of your lower back.
This pose is close to a lunge. Standing up straight step outwards, letting your leg behind you fall down to the floor, knee making contact with the ground. Hold this position for 10 seconds, then shift your legs. Repeat this action 5 times on each leg.
All of these poses, when done correctly can help moderate and eventually eliminate pains in your lower back and legs. Together, when these two parts of your body are cured you’ll be walking with more confidence and relief. Your back will be stronger and your legs will perform as the proper support system your back needs.
Of course, when doing any and all of these moves, it’s better to have refreshments and snacks nearby as this will tire you out. Once you’ve started stretches on a daily basis, try as hard as you can to never stop your roll. Once you do, it’ll become hard to get back into schedule when you’re body hasn’t worked one day.
If any of these moves seem to apply too much strain on your limbs, hold the pose for a shorter amount of time or find easier alternatives for the move. Once you’re used to the easier alternative, you can escalate your stretching routine to harder moves held for longer periods of time.
It’s all about taking your time and working your way steadily. Never rush and keep your hopes high. A relaxed back isn’t far, it’s about stretching to get where you need to be.