Lifestyle changes can help relieve low back pain
Exercise and Physical Therapy
Physical activity plays a strong role in recovering from back pain and particularly in helping to prevent future pain and loss of function. An exercise program can include any or all of the following components: flexing, stretching, endurance training, strength building, and aerobic activity. There is no one-size-fits-all approach. Exercise programs are individualized because people have different levels of pain and differing injuries that caused the pain initially.
Improving the strength, endurance, and function of your back helps minimize the chance of recurrence of back pain. One study showed that people who exercised after an initial episode of acute low back pain were less likely to experience a recurrence of that pain than people who did not exercise after the initial pain.
Any mild discomfort that you may feel as you begin an exercise program should gradually ease as your muscles become stronger. The key is to start an exercise program at a low level to ensure your comfort and proper technique, and then progress slowly as your symptoms allow. Exercises for specific muscles that stabilize the spine may help reduce the low back pain.
Obesity is a leading cause of back pain. Reducing your weight by only 10 percent can make a big difference in decreasing back pain. Extra abdominal fat and weight on the pelvis pulls the body forward and puts strain on your lower back muscles. Although obesity may not be the cause of the pain, it takes the pain to a whole new level. Extra weight throws off your posture and makes it difficult to properly align your body for a good sleep. It requires your back muscles to pick up the slack.
Back pain probably means your stiletto-wearing days are over. Wear shoes with low heels. If you will be walking long distances, bring along supportive flats or other comfortable shoes. Look for pairs of shoes with good arch support.
Give your back as much support as you can while you sleep. Find a mattress that is not too firm but not too soft, either. Sleeping on your back or stomach strains your back. To counter this, back sleepers should place a pillow under their knees, and stomach sleepers can opt to put a pillow under the pelvis. Sleeping on your side is your best bet. You can bend your knees and maneuver then closer to your chest. In addition, placing a pillow between your knees can help support your back.