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Updated by fordyce-davidson on Jan 13, 2023
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The top 5 treatments for low back pain

Here are my recommendations for treating generic musculoskeletal low back pain. I am a Chiropractor in Calgary Alberta. These are just recommendations, always seek advice from your health professional.



The only treatment that can rival exercise for relief of back pain is a good nights sleep. This can be challenging when you are in pain, so the use of pillows between or under your knees can be a great way to help get to sleep. On your side with a pillow between the knees or on your back with two pillows under your knees can help ease the pain.


Stop aggravating it

This sounds painfully simple but it’s so commonly over looked. There’s usually a reason for your pain, even if it doesn’t cause you pain to do, such as sitting on your couch. Many people sit on their couch when they have low back pain because it feels comfortable but once they goto move they have more pain than before, the movement often gets blamed rather than the couch. Stretching, sitting, driving, and self treatment are some of the most common causes of aggravating the pain.


Avoid pain medication

This seems counterintuitive, let me explain. Pain killers are great for masking symptoms but they come at the cost of physiologically slowing healing as well as mechanically, due to the injured tissue losing its ability to express when it is being irritated by a movement or position. Reserve pain meds for when the pain is not tolerable, they are an incredibly useful tool but should be reserved for a second line of defense rather than the first line treatment.


Get assessed by a professional

Get assessed by an expert. Medical doctors are experts on the more complex internal issues that can cause low back pain but Physiotherapists Chiropractors, Osteopaths, massage therapists and athletic therapists are all experts with different skill sets surrounding the musculoskeletal system. Often a manipulation delivered by a professional can be a great source of pain relief for patients suffering from low back pain.



Scientifically exercise is supported as one of the best treatments for low back pain. This can be as complex as weight training that doesn’t flare your symptoms up or as basic as gentle stretches (i.e cat cows)

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