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What are the Best Treatments for Chronic Lower Back Pain?

By Erin J. Hill
Updated May 17, 2024
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The best treatments for chronic lower back pain will depend on the condition causing it. Common options are medication, either prescription or over the counter; chiropractic care; acupressure; and sometimes surgery. A doctor or other medical professional is the best place to turn for advice on the best treatments for a particular condition.

Chronic lower back pain is generally treated using some type of medication. Pain which happens at intervals with periods of remission in between is often treated with over the counter medication. Severe pain may require something stronger, so a doctor may prescribe a drug that is designed to treat long-term serious pain. The exact medication may depend on the underlying cause of pain. For instance, arthritis may require an anti-inflammatory drug to reduce swelling of joints.

Alternative therapies may also be useful in treating chronic lower back pain. Chiropractic care has been effective for many patients. This involves the manipulation of the spine and muscles to align them properly and reduce pain. Acupressure and acupuncture are also effective remedies. These both work by sending signals through the nerves instead of pain, since theories state that nerves can only process one sensation at a time.

In some cases surgery may be needed to correct chronic lower back pain caused by an injury or certain other conditions. This is generally reserved for cases in which other methods of treatment don’t work, since there are risks associated with any surgery. A medical analysis should be done by a medical specialist to determine the method of treatment that will work best for each patient.

There are a side variety of conditions which may cause chronic lower back pain. Some cannot be cured, but most can be managed with proper treatment. Patients are usually advised to maintain an active lifestyle to strengthen bones and muscles. This allows the body to have enough strength to properly hold up the spine, which can alleviate pain since improper posture can make back pain worse.

In some cases lower back pain may be caused by an underlying medical condition. Pain which doesn’t subside even with treatment or worsens over time should be evaluated by a doctor. Kidney infection or damage, gallbladder issues, and certain other conditions can lead to chronic lower back pain. Treatment for these instances usually involves alleviate the underlying cause.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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