Scientifically Validated Natural Treatment Strategies for Lower Back Pain: An Evidence-Based Approach

More than 600 million people across the globe are troubled by lower back pain, according to estimates. There are diverse medical interventions to help those affected but, in many cases, these do have adverse effects.

Back Pain

Back Pain

If you wish to reduce your dependence on medications, here are some natural ways to treat low back pain. These have some science to back them as well.

Read Also: Lack of Sleep Could Lead To Lower Back Pain and Vice Versa

Massage

Evidence shows that an hour of massage per week could reduce low back pain and help to make you more active. While research has not convincingly shown it as being helpful, many people have reported improved symptoms from it.

According to experts, massage helps to release muscle tightness to ease the pain. Guidelines in the U.S. and the U.K. include it as a non-pharmacological pain treatment option.

Exercise and Physical Therapy

Regular exercise is key to good health – that statement has probably become cliché by now. Easing of low back pain is one of the many benefits you stand to get from it. Exercise and physical activity can aid in reducing pressure on your spinal disks.

Studies have time and again shown that physical activities, including walking, swimming, yoga, and tai chi, can relieve pain and improve function. They strengthen the muscles, boost blood flow, and improve flexibility. A 2018 Pain and Therapy paper recommends exercise and physical therapy as a first-line treatment for low back pain, based on available evidence.

Mindfulness Meditation

Mind-body techniques, especially meditation, are becoming more popular for managing chronic pain, including lower back pain. These aim to work on how the brain responds to pain and possibly promote the release of “feel good” chemicals.

Read Also: Back Pain Cure: Hydrafil a New Injectable, Safely Restores the Integrity of Damaged Spinal Discs

Perhaps, one of the more popular techniques is mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR). A 2017 research review concluded that this may ease low back pain and improve physical function in the short term.

Good Posture

By now, you may know that poor posture plays a major part in the occurrence of back pain. This puts harmful strain on the spine and causes muscle stiffness. So it is important to avoid bad posture.

You can guard against pain by standing or sitting straight, your head level and in alignment with your body. Good posture also means not being static – avoid sitting or standing for too long in the same position. One 2021 study suggests that the longer a person sits in a slumped position, the greater the low back muscle stiffness they experience.

Quality Sleep

Wonderful things happen when you sleep. Many healing processes are set in motion. There’s evidence that people who don’t get good sleep are more prone to chronic pain, including low back pain.

If you’re finding it difficult to get quality shuteye, there are several things you can do to help. Natural sleep aids that can help out include melatonin, vitamins B, C, and D, and valerian. Three months of supplementation with magnesium-melatonin-vitamin B complex proved useful for insomnia – no matter the cause – in a 2019 study.

Read Also: Functional Cognitive Therapy for Chronic Low Back Pain: A Phase 3 Randomized Controlled Trial Demonstrating Significant and Sustained Reductions in Pain and Disability

Acupuncture

If you aren’t too sensitive to needles, here’s another natural approach to treating your lower back pain. Acupuncture is even regarded to be among the best options you have. Experts say you may especially find it useful if you have nerve-related pain or muscle spasms.

This is a good second-line treatment for not only acute but also chronic lower back pain. A 2017 systematic review of nonpharmacologic therapies for an American College of Physicians Clinical Practice Guideline showed that acupuncture is capable of providing relief of moderate quality for chronic low back pain. The relief you get after each session can last from a few hours to weeks.

Herbal Remedies

It is not very likely that your doctor would recommend herbal supplements for your lower back pain. However, a number of herbs have shown to be potentially helpful for this purpose. White willow, devil’s claw, and turmeric are examples of such.

Read Also: Dasatinib and Quercetin a Drug Cocktail That Could Prevent Back Pain in Old Age

A Cochrane study review published in 2014 revealed that Capsicum frutescens (cayenne) reduced low-back pain more, compared to a placebo. It also listed H. procumbens (devil’s claw), S. alba (white willow), and lavender essential oil among other natural remedies that could help.

It helps to speak with a healthcare professional for guidance and advice if you are thinking of natural approaches for managing your lower back pain.

References

Shipton, EA (2018). Physical Therapy Approaches in the Treatment of Low Back Pain. Pain Ther 7, 127–137. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40122-018-0105-x

Kett, AR; Sichting, F; Milani, TL (2021). The Effect of Sitting Posture and Postural Activity on Low Back Muscle Stiffness. Biomechanics 2021, 1, 214-224. https://doi.org/10.3390/biomechanics1020018

Anheyer D et al (2017). Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction for Treating Low Back Pain: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. Ann Intern Med. 2017 Jun 6;166(11):799-807. https://doi.org/10.7326/M16-1997

Djokic G et al (2019). The Effects of Magnesium – Melatonin – Vit B Complex Supplementation in Treatment of Insomnia. Open Access Maced J Med Sci. 2019 Aug 30;7(18):3101-3105. https://doi.org/10.3889/oamjms.2019.771

Chou R et al (2017). Nonpharmacologic Therapies for Low Back Pain: A Systematic Review for an American College of Physicians Clinical Practice Guideline. Ann Intern Med. 2017 Apr 4;166(7):493-505. https://doi.org/10.7326/M16-2459

Oltean H et al (2014). Herbal medicine for low-back pain. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Dec 23;2014(12):CD004504. https://doi.org/10.1002/14651858.CD004504.pub4

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