When you live with chronic back pain, life can feel hopeless. After trying physical therapy, medications, chiropractors, and surgeries without any success, you probably feel defeated.
You should never let your pain get you down and take control over your life. Follow these tips to live a better life, and achieve chronic back pain relief.
Stop Fighting It
If you’ve suffered from back fatigue for an extended period of time, you feel the frustration. It’s easy to get angry and resentful at your body, but it won’t get you very far.
The first thing you can do to combat chronic pain is to accept it. Once you learn to accept that it’s just a part of your life, you have to take into consideration like anything else. You can approach it rationally and the day-to-day will feel a little easier.
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Step Outside the Box
If there’s one back pain treatment you’ve been trying for a long time without any success, try something new. The solution that works best to alleviate your pain may not be the most obvious one.
Some people find that stretching through yoga helps to soothe their pain problems, while others swear by strengthening their core through pilates. Acupuncture is also acclaimed for effectively treating chronic back pain.
Acupuncture provides a holistic, alternative pain treatment by stimulating the nervous system to release chemicals including endorphins and enkephalin.
Many people turn to it as a last resort, but it may be the primary treatment that helps alleviate chronic back pain. Find what works best for you and don’t be afraid to explore your options.
Learn Meditation Techniques
By learning deep breathing and meditation techniques, you may be able to gain more control over your pain. Studies have shown that mindfulness-based meditation therapy can help reduce stress, promote relaxation, and treat pain.
Learning meditation techniques can teach you how to refocus your attention to your pain. It’s all about sitting or lying down, relaxing, and focusing on your breath. You can learn to build more awareness of your body and train your brain to help control your pain.
Improve Your Sleeping Posture
Practitioners may have informed you to work on your sitting/standing posture, but they probably haven’t told you that you need to work on your sleeping posture as well to help alleviate symptoms of back pan.
While you sleep, the main acting force on your body is gravity, meaning your spinal alignment is in a vulnerable position.
Depending on how you sleep, you may be putting yourself at risk for more pain. For the best spinal alignment, you should sleep on your back. This keeps your spine it its most neutral position.
You also may have heard the old wives’ tale that you need to sleep on the floor or a super firm mattress for your back pain. In reality, you should be sleeping on a medium firm bed that supports your spine to avoid back pain while sleeping. Another too firm will not allow your body weight to evenly distribute in its most natural position.
Reduce Your Stress
Reducing your stress is something that is far easier said than done, but to protect you from additional pain it is an essential step.
Increased stress leads to increased tension and pain. There are many tactics known to help you minimize stress.
Try using relaxation techniques like meditation, exercising, avoiding alcohol and caffeine, eating a balanced diet, or getting a massage. Anything you can do to reduce your stress with help to avoid intensifying your pain.
Build a Network of Support
Sometimes it just helps to know that others are experiencing the same thing that you are. It’s difficult to talk to people who don’t understand your pain and emotions, so try joining a support group of people who also suffer from chronic pain.
Having a network of support can help you feel not so alone in your pain.
Acknowledge your Risk for Depression
Many people who suffer from chronic back pain suffer from depression as well. Studies show that this link is as high as 30-50 percent of people with chronic pain who also are diagnosed with depression or anxiety.
Make sure you understand your risk for depression early on. Depression is a slippery slope to fall down and it’s hard to overcome. If you acknowledge beforehand that your pain may lead you to depression if you let it take control over you, then you can be strong-willed enough to fight it.
Learning to live with chronic back pain is all about finding personal ways to cope. Don’t consider having to cope with your pain as a huge negative. We all have personal issues that we have to deal with and learn to live with every day.
Your back pain doesn’t have to be something that defines you, but it is a part of you. If you can find a way to accept it and learn strategies to minimize the pain, then every day will be a little easier to endure.
Laurie Larson is a freelance writer from Durham, NC. She writes on home, health, and lifestyle topics.