Back pain is one of the most common health ailments in the country, afflicting an estimated 80 percent of Americans during their lifetimes. To make matters worse, the exact cause of such back pain is frequently difficult to diagnose and, therefore, difficult to treat, leaving its victims to rely on the dubious relief of ice packs and aspirin.
But a number of treatment options exist which offer natural relief for back pain. Moreover, many of these alternative therapies have proven to be as effective as traditional medical treatments.
Home Remedies For Back Pain
Researchers at Sheffield University (United Kingdom) studied the effects of acupuncture on low back pain and found that this traditional Chinese treatment significantly reduced pain and pain medication usage of their research subjects.
Acupuncture for back pain involves the insertion of tiny needles along invisible pathways (or meridians) of the body by trained practitioners. This practice is based on the Chinese belief that that pain is the result of blocked energy in the meridians which are released by the insertion of needles.
In case you’re wondering whether you will have to suffer pain in order to relieve your back pain…don’t worry. Acupuncture is rarely painful when administered by a skilled practitioner.
Music therapy is not a new treatment option. Rather, it is an ancient art that has attracted a wide range of practitioners. According to the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, there are more than 5,000 actively-practicing music therapists in the United States today.
Through a number of scientific studies, music therapy has been proven to help lighten depression, ease anxiety, and relieve pain—particularly back pain. One such study, conducted on those hospitalized with chronic back pain, showed that music therapy reduced their amounts of pain and levels of disability.
But what kind of music can give you natural relief for back pain? Studies suggest that slow, mellifluous music (such as the classical kind) is your best bet.
Reflexology is an ancient practice that has been shown to relieve stress, anxiety, and pain. Its practice involves rubbing or pressing on specific pressure (or reflex) points on the feet or on the hands which correspond to, and treat the ailments of, certain organs throughout the body.
When researchers at the Hospital of Beijing College of Languages tested reflexology on the lower back pain of 20 study participants, all showed a marked reduction in back pain. (Source: Internet Health Library)
A typical reflexology session lasts for 1 hour. But don’t get upset if your pain is unchanged after the first session. It generally takes 3 to 4 reflexology sessions to see a significant reduction of pain (although this varies quite a bit from person to person).