Do you ever suffer from a minor (sub-acute) back pain episode such as a generalised soreness or muscular ache? This is different from a complicated, major (acute) back pain episode. If you have had a serious accident or injury, you must consult your preferred health care professional. An example of sub-acute back pain may include a slight twinge that lasts for 24 hours or less. If you suffer from this type of minor pain, here are six simple ways to manage back pain at home.

1. Apply a Cold Pack

One of the best ways to initially sooth minor muscular pain in the back is to apply a cold pack. Apply within first 24 hours with a 15 mins on / 2 hours off routine. These packs are widely available from pharmacies and grocery stores. Holding the pack over the area will help relieve minor pain. This is known as cold compression therapy and is an established way of alleviating pain.

2. Use Heat Therapy

Relief from back pain can be achieved, after the initial 24 hours, by applying some low-level heat to the area. Simply apply a dedicated heat pack or wheat bag. They will stay warm for several hours and can be constantly held over the affected area. Alternatively, you could seek heat therapy from a hot bath, or spa if you have one. Another option is to apply a ‘deep-heat’ cream and rub into painful area.

3. Keep Moving

The back, like the rest of your body, is designed to be active. Being sedentary or sitting still for lengthy periods is not the best way to manage sub-acute back pain episodes. Regular, gentle movement that your back can handle is best.

4. Use Massage

Massage can be an extremely helpful modality, and can be used one of three ways. At home, you could get a spouse or partner to massage you. You could hire a therapist to give you a massage at home. You could buy a back massaging device or massage chair. Massage helps most people suffering from muscular back pain.

5. Assess Best Posture for You

This will vary from one person to the next and perhaps from one episode to the next. If you find that sitting is relieving then sit. If standing is better, then simply stand. If lying down is preferred, then lie down. There is no rule when it comes to undertaking a particular posture, as this will need to be determined by the individual. The only rule that applies is that there will be a point by which you will need to change position, as the body needs ongoing movement. Maybe a combination of lying and standing is required, as sitting aggravates. So lie for 30 mins, and then stand for 30 mins.

6. Get a Good Supporting Mattress

Change your mattress if: (1) You’ve purchased the wrong variety, as the quality is simply not good enough or (2) The mattress is beyond its used by date. As a general rule, the firm to medium density support mattresses will assist the mechanical needs of your spine better, than a super hard or soft variety.