Every single day we rely on our spine to support us in everything we do. From sports, to simply rolling out of bed, we take the support we get from our back for granted. Back pain is one of the most common complaints among adults and there are so many causes that the recovery can be difficult to nail down. Back pain doesn’t just affect your everyday activities, it can affect your sleep. Even lying as still as possible can cause pain you weren’t expecting.

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Managing chronic and recurring back pain is literally, well, a pain for those who have to bear with it. Not only do you have to simply manage with the pain radiating through the affected area, you end up tired from the lack of sleep due to it. When you choose to look at methods of relieving back pain, you have to look beyond what painkillers you’re taking. There are plenty of ways to alleviate back aches, and we’ve listed some of those for you here.

Sleeping Position: Poor sleep position, along with a badly supportive mattress, can badly aggravate an existing back pain. If you cannot afford an orthopaedic mattress, then you need to opt for a lot of pillows. Not necessarily to prop you up, but to assist the way you sleep. A pillow between your knees when sleeping on your side can support your spine and hips, taking the pressure off them when you sleep. If you sleep on your back, pillows under your knees to keep them slightly bent can alleviate back pain.

Surgery: Some surgeries can help to relieve pressure on your back immediately. Laser spine surgery is one such procedure for those with discs in need of repair. It’s non-invasive, making the recovery easier than an open procedure. Some back surgeries are about pain management and an epidural that numbs the nerves in the back can work for that.

Medication: It’s not something anyone likes to take for the long-term, but medication, specifically nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories can really help to take the edge off the pain. People who have more serious conditions than a slipped disc, such as cauda equina syndrome, sometimes require stronger medication like liquid morphine to take the worst of the pain away.

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Physical Therapy: A qualified physical therapist can teach you how to sit, stand and even walk differently to adjust your posture. Whatever you choose to do, you should be careful about how you carry yourself as it can make all the difference to the pain in your back. Posture matters a lot, so remember this when you are working at a desk!

Exercise: Believe it or not, sometimes rest can be the worst thing you do for a sore back. Staying still can make you stiff and uncomfortable and exacerbate the pain. Gentle exercise, such as swimming, yoga and Pilates can help you to work out your back without hurting yourself.

Back pain doesn’t have to rule your life. If you know how to correctly manage it, you can be more comfortable during day to day activities.