Back spasms can be incapacitating and can put an individual on hold from any physical activity whether at home or at work. The condition can disrupt with the ability of the individual to participate in hobbies as well. The initial step is to determine the cause of the back spasm since various diagnoses require a different mode of treatment. Nevertheless, regardless of the cause, there are certain things to take into consideration in order to manage the back spasm.
Measures in managing a back spasm
- Once the initial sign of back spasm occurs, the individual should stretch gently to help relax the muscle. Do not bounce or force the stretch but simply deep enough to release the muscular tension. You can encourage the individual to rest on his/her back and bring one knee at a time to his/her chest. Hold every knee in a gentle manner for several deep breaths and then position both feet flat on the ground. The knees should be lowered on one side toward the floor as far as possible without worsening the back spasm. Hold for 5-10 deep breaths and then go to the other side.
- Apply heat to relax the muscle. All you have to do is to use a heating pad or a heat pack and apply for at least 15 minutes. Once the pain from the back spasms subsides, apply an ice pack on the affected area for 20 minutes. If the back spasms are triggered by an inflammatory condition such as arthritis or disk injury, you have to use ice over heat.
- Encourage the individual to practice yogic deep breathing. Once the back starts to spasm, there is tendency to tighten up to protect the back. It is sad to note that this can lengthen the back spasm. The individual should inhale slowly and deeply via the nose and exhale slowly through the nose. During every exhale, the individual should try to consciously relax the muscles in the back.
- Encourage the individual to incorporate imagery. Once the individual exhales and tries to relax the muscles, imagery can be used to let the body know what should be done.
- Provide the individual with over-the-counter medications for pain or swelling such as aspirin. There are also non-prescription medications that can be applied topically in the form of creams that produces the sensation of heat or cold. As for severe cases, a doctor must be consulted so that a prescription-strength anti-inflammatory medications or muscle relaxants can be given.
Considerations to bear in mind
A doctor must be consulted if the individual experiences chronic back pain since there might be an underlying medical condition that requires treatment. You can register for first aid training so that you know the appropriate steps to perform.
Backs spasms can be prevented from occurring by observing proper body mechanics when working and take part in hobbies. The individual should determine the movements that cause the back spasms and look for other ways to move. Exercises that strengthen the core muscles must be incorporated into the workout routine.