Chronic back pain is one of those things that many people suffer with. A physician should always diagnose what type of back pain you have, and what treatment is necessary.
Back pain often requires painkillers for a varied amount of time, sometimes you may be referred to have physiotherapy, or in severe cases to have surgery, such as those offered by Progressive Spine.
If your doctor agrees, there are some vitamins and supplements you can take, that may help you feel better, but it is very important to run them past your doctor first.
Although supplements are often marketed as ‘natural’, this doesn’t always mean they are safe. Some can interact with each other, and some can have a detrimental effect if taken with other prescription medication.
Do your research and decide what you think may be beneficial, and then discuss with your medical practitioner. That being said, below are some supplements that may help your back pain.
Glucosamine and Chondroitin
Glucosamine and chondroitin are both produced by the body naturally, and can be found in the fluid and cartilage within joints.
There have been many studies done of the role of glucosamine and chondroitin in knee and hip pain which show a positive impact, but minimal studies elsewhere in the body. These supplements however are thought to slow the progress of osteoarthritis symptoms, and can offer some pain relief in some cases.
Glucosamine and chondroitin are thought to work by helping to repair cartilage and keeping it supple.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega 3 can be found in such foods as oily fish, but it can also be found in supplement form.
Omega-3 has many benefits, but in relation to back pain, it is noted for its anti-inflammatory properties, which may help reduce back pain, particularly if it is caused by osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.
Turmeric has had a bit of a rebranding in the last few years. It has gone from a spice that has been predominantly used in cooking, to being lauded for its health benefits. Influencers the world over have been pictured with turmeric lattes or shots of turmeric.
There is some truth to all the hype. The active ingredient in Turmeric is Curcumin, and is known to have anti-aging and analgesic properties.
By either increasing Turmeric in your diet, or taking capsules containing it, you could alleviate some of your chronic pain.
Vitamin D deficiency is very common in many people, especially in people that live in countries that don’t have a great deal of sunlight throughout the year, such as the UK.
Vitamin D is commonly received into the body through sunlight or food, and Vitamin D is important for bone health. [READ: 22 Amazing Benefits Of Soy Protein For Health, Skin, And Hair]
Only a blood test can tell you if you have a deficiency, and if you your doctor will prescribe you vitamin D supplements, the strength of which will be determined by your Vitamin D level.
Devils claw is an extract from a plant, the active ingredient is known as harpagoside.
Harpagoside has anti-inflammatory effects and reduces pain by relieving inflammation and swelling around the affected area.
Back pain can sometimes be alleviated with other methods, physiotherapy is commonly used, as are visits to an osteopath or chiropractor.
Ensuring you have the correct posture is vital, and a good physio will take into account your daily activities, such as your position whilst sitting at a computer. Or, if you have a manual job, they will ensure that you are lifting correctly.
Certain types of massage can help with pain symptoms, heat is a very good pain reliever, so a massage such as a hot stone massage can be good at relieving pain.
Gentle, doctor approved exercise can be beneficial. Often resting too much can be detrimental, as muscles get very stiff and may start to become weak.
Chronic pain can have an adverse effect on your mental wellbeing, it is always important to talk to your doctor if you are feeling low. They can organise for you to see a psychologist and, if appropriate, some medication.
There is no shame in seeking help if you feel your mental health is deteriorating, it is just as important as your physical health.
Whatever you decide to add to your diet, or route you take to help control your pain, always talk to a physician first to ensure the supplements don’t interact with any other medication that you may be taking. [READ: Why You Need To Do Yoga]
If you decide on physiotherapy or massage, ensure that the practitioner is licensed and regulated with the relevant authorities.