Whether you suffer from back pain due to exercise, a bad mattress or hours spent sitting in front of the computer, the pain and discomfort you have to endure can be annoying and in severe cases, even debilitating.
Although there are many medications to relieve lower back pain, it is better to opt for natural remedies to treat your pain. The wonderful thing about home remedies for back pain is that they are natural and safe, so it is unlikely that you will experience side effects, which you are bound to when using pharmaceuticals. Before you start using natural remedies to relieve backache, you should find out the cause of the pain and make a note of the symptoms you experience. Apart from physical injury, the pain could be the result of an underlying medical condition. Once you have identified these, you can use a home remedy that works effectively for lower back pain (LBP) or chronic lower back pain (CLBP).
Symptoms of Back Pain
Some of the most common signs and symptoms of back pain include the following:
- Swelling on the back
- Increased body temperature
- Numbness surrounding the buttocks and back
- Unceasing backaches
- Pain that becomes worse after sitting for long periods
- In some cases, pain that extends to the knees and legs
In most cases, these symptoms range from mild to moderate. If you experience severe symptoms, you should seek medical attention right away. However, if you suffer from mild to moderate back pain, you can get relief by using safe and all-natural home remedies that work wonders in a short span of time.
Causes of Back Pain
Back pain can be caused by any injury or damage to the discs, ligament or muscles of your back. The most common causes of strained muscles, ligaments or spasms include the following:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Not lifting an object properly
- Awkward or poor posture
- Sleeping disorders
- Unsuitable mattress
- Strenuous physical exercise or workout
- Medical conditions like an infection or a fever that affects the spine
- Gender – females are more prone to back pain than males
- Age – older people have a higher tendency to suffer back pain
Any of the causes mentioned above could be the reason you are experiencing back pain. In some cases, the cause of back pain may remain unknown until a medical professional recommends appropriate tests and examines the individual who is suffering from back pain.
Home Remedies to Cure Back Pain
Here is a list of the best home remedies to relieve back pain:
One of the active components of ginger is gingerol. This component is known to have powerful anti-inflammatory properties and pain-relieving effects. This is why ginger root is one of the best home remedies for people who suffer from back pain.(1)
To use ginger root as a natural remedy for back pain, take a 1- or 2-inch piece of ginger and 1 cup of hot water. Let the ginger steep in the hot water for 5 to 10 minutes and drink the tea before it gets cold. If you like, you can add a bit of honey for flavor. Alternatively, you can massage your back with ginger oil. It is recommended that you do this at least 2 times a day.
One of the things that makes basil leaves a superb natural remedy for back pain is its rich content of important oils such as linalool, citronellol and eugenol. These oils exhibit pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties, making basil leaves highly effective for treating back pain.(2)
To treat back pain with basil leaves, take 1 to 2 teaspoons of the leaves and 1 cup of hot water. Leave the basil leaves to steep in the hot water for 10 minutes. Drink the tea before it turns cold. If you like, you can add a little honey to improve the flavor. Do this 2 to 3 times a day for best results. Alternatively, you can massage your back with basil oil.
Garlic contains components like capsaicin and selenium that are well known for their analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. The combined effects of these beneficial compounds of garlic can be extremely effective in treating back pain.(3)
To relieve back pain with garlic, all you need to do is crush 8 to 10 cloves of garlic to form a fine paste. Apply the paste to the affected area on your back and cover it with a clean towel. Leave it on for 30 minutes and then use a wet piece of cloth to wipe it off. Repeat this at least 2 times a day. You can also chew on 2 or 3 garlic cloves every morning to gain its benefits, not only for your back pain but also for your overall health.
As you know, essential oils have magical effects on a number of conditions. You can use them to relieve back pain as well. One of the best essential oils for back pain is peppermint essential oil as its anti-inflammatory and soothing nature can provide quick relief from aches and pains. It also has antispasmodic properties which are known to provide relief from muscle spasms.(4)(5)
All you need is 5 to 6 drops peppermint essential oil mixed with 1 tablespoon of a carrier oil such as almond or coconut oil. Blend the oils well and apply to the affected area. Do this 2 times a day for best results.
Apart from peppermint essential oil, you can also use lavender essential oil which has analgesic and antispasmodic properties that can relieve pain and muscle spasms. Its anti-inflammatory properties are effective in reducing any swelling that may accompany your back pain.
Also known as magnesium sulfate, Epsom salt is rich in magnesium, making it an excellent anti-inflammatory agent which in turn makes it great for relieving back pain. Magnesium is also known to be very effective in relieving pain.(6)(7)
To use Epsom salt, add 1 to 2 cups to a bucket of water in your bathtub. Soak and relax in this water for 10 to 15 minutes. Do this 3 times a week for relieving the pain and discomfort.
Fenugreek is well known for its natural anti-inflammatory properties. There have been some studies that found it to be effective for pain relief. Due to this, fenugreek is one of the top natural treatments for back pain.(8)
To make a remedy with fenugreek, take 1 teaspoon of fenugreek powder and add it to 1 glass of hot milk. Stir well and then drink the mixture. If you like, you can add a bit of honey for flavor. To get relief from your back pain, make sure that you drink this mixture once every night.
When it comes to back pain, a heat bag or heat pad can work wonders. Heat therapy is known to have pain-relieving, or analgesic, effects on the muscles that are affected and therefore, can help in providing relief for muscle spasms and pain.(9)
Apply a heat bag on the affected area of your back and leave it on for 25 to 30 minutes. Do this at least once a day to relieve the pain on your back. This is a simple home remedy, but is found to be extremely effective for back pain.
It is proven that milk exhibits anti-inflammatory properties, making it one of the most efficient and easiest ways to naturally treat back pain. Additionally, milk is rich in calcium, which helps in strengthening bones and, thereby, prevents the recurrence of back pain which could be caused by weak bones.(10)
To treat back pain, all you need to do is drink a glass of warm milk every day. Repeat 2 times a day for best results. Drinking milk daily provides other health benefits as well, so this is definitely a great remedy.
Due to its pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effects, chamomile is often referred to as an herbal aspirin. The properties that chamomile has can provide relief from pain, inflammation and swelling. If you are looking for a natural remedy for back pain, chamomile tea is one of your best options.
Take 1 teaspoon of dried chamomile in 1 cup of hot water and let it steep for 5 to 10 minutes. Add a bit of honey to give it some flavor and drink the tea before it turns cold. To relieve back pain, drink chamomile tea at least 2 times a day.
Aloe Vera Juice
Aloe vera juice is known to have an array of health benefits. It is also known to be an effective natural treatment for back pain. Being a medicinal herb, it has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It is these properties that make it helpful for relieving back pain.(11)
To treat back pain, drink 1/4 or 1/2 cup of aloe vera juice every day. Do this once daily. Alternatively, you can also apply aloe vera gel on the affected area on your back.
Things to Avoid Back Pain
There are certain things you can do to avoid back pain, such as:
- Quit smoking. If you cannot quit at once, reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke daily gradually until you completely quit. Smoking restricts the flow of blood that contains nutrients to spinal discs, making you more vulnerable to back pain.
- Do not slouch when sitting, especially if you sit for long periods at a time. Poor posture is one of the most common causes of back pain.
- Do not stress yourself too much as it can tense up your muscles, resulting in back pain.
- Avoid eating too much fast food or excessively spicy foods as they can strain your nervous system, which in turn will cause back pain.
- Avoid sleeping flat on your back. Sleeping on your side is the best position.
- Avoid a sedentary lifestyle. Even moderate exercise on a regular basis can help you avoid back pain.
Back pain can manifest as a dull ache that persists or a sudden sharp pain. No matter what type of pain you experience, it can cause a lot of discomfort and hamper your lifestyle. Fortunately, you can try the helpful home remedies mentioned above to treat back pain and even prevent its recurrence.