The current COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the lives of nearly everyone in the United States for the last few weeks. While there are far worse things than being forced to stay inside your home all day, this drastic change to daily life is still causing some major issues for a lot of people. This is especially true for people that are prone to lower back pain because most of the normal means of treatment are no longer an option.
Getting a massage is always a great way to help eliminate lower back pain, but that obviously is not an option right now. It is also completely reasonable to avoid trips to the doctor that are not for emergency purposes. These are the five best ways to manage your lower back pain during the pandemic.
Do Not Forget to Exercise
A lack of movement is one of the main causes of lower back pain because it allows the muscles to get tight. Going to the gym is not possible right now, but you should not completely forgo exercise altogether. It is best to stick to light exercise to loosen the tight muscles. This exercise will also make the body release endorphins, which will naturally lower your stress and pain levels. Outdoor exercise is still allowed throughout the country, so take a short walk around the block every day. If you have a pool in the backyard, then swimming is another great option.
Make Sure to Stretch Often
Since you are unable to leave the house right now, it is very easy to get extremely complacent. The lack of responsibilities can easily cause you to do as little as possible every day. While this may seem like a great way to get through the pandemic, it may actually be causing your lower back pain. It is vitally important to get up and stretch periodically throughout the day. There are a lot of muscles located in the lower back, so you will need to do several different stretches to help ease the pain. A short yoga session is also a great way to stretch out your tight muscles.
Maintain Good Posture
There is only so much you can do around the house to keep yourself entertained. Once you run out of activities and chores, you will likely be stuck on the couch watching television for several hours. If you are going to spend a lot of your time relaxing, it is very important to constantly monitor your posture. Poor posture places a lot of strain on the lower back muscles, which ultimately leads to unwanted pain. Make sure to always keep your back as straight as possible when sitting on the couch. Take advantage of the back cushions for extra support. Do not stay hunched forward for an extended period of time.
Use Ice and Heat
Ice and heat have been used to relieve muscle pains since the dawn of medicine. Ice is most effective when used directly after experiencing the pain for the first time. The cold will numb the pain while also helping to reduce the inflammation in the muscles. If you do not have any ice packs available, then you can always use a pack of frozen vegetables. It is best to use heat when you have been dealing with the main for several days. The heat helps loosen the stiff muscles. Do not apply heat or ice for more than 20 minutes.
Get Plenty of Sleep
Maintaining a normal sleep schedule is very difficult when you have absolutely nowhere to be in the morning. It is simply far too easy to stay up all night watching movies or playing video games. A lack of sleep can make your lower back hurt more because it lowers the body’s pain tolerance. If you are unable to get at least seven hours of sleep at night, then try to take a short nap during the afternoon.