Lower back pains due to a minor fall are no laughing matter. Although they are not too serious that they would merit a visit to the ER, they can still be painful and leave you feeling uncomfortable for a few days. Fortunately, you can look after yourself at home and ease your pain and discomfort with a few simple methods.
Identify the Source of the Pain
Before anything else, you have to confirm that what you’re feeling is indeed nothing serious and can be treated with various home remedies.
Below are a few red flags or signs that you need to consult an expert on how to treat your lower back pain:
- You caught a fever, and it doesn’t go away with basic flu medicine. It’s normal to feel uncomfortable, like your skin feels tight, soon after a fall because your body is still responding to the injury. If it develops into a prolonged fever and your condition doesn’t improve even after taking meds, however, the fever might be indicative of an infection. If you suspect this to be the case, get in touch with a primary care physician. They most likely prescribe antibiotics, along with medication or advice on how to alleviate the pain as your body heals itself.
- You feel tingling or numbness. If the pain doesn’t go away or if it feels like pins and needles are having a party on your lower back, consider it a serious red flag and consult a doctor right away. These sharp, tingling sensations could mean that some nerves were damaged as a result of your fall. If, on top of these sensations you’re also nursing some major bruising, you might have sustained spinal trauma. Worst-case scenarios include a herniated disk and spinal stenosis. These must be treated immediately, otherwise, you might suffer permanent nerve damage and develop a disability.
- You lose control of your bowels or bladder. This is another possible indicator of nerve damage and must be treated immediately.
If you have ruled out these red flags and are certain that your back pain is a minor ailment, you can do the following home remedies and recover at home.
Home Remedies for Back Pain
- Apply an ice pack. Immediately after a fall, the affected area will start to swell and the pain will register. You can alleviate both by applying ice packs directly to the swelling area. Do this for half an hour every four hours for the next two to three days.
- Stay off your feet and lie down as much as possible. Pressure can build on your lower back even if you only stand and not walk around. Even sitting on a hard surface can add pressure on the lumbar area and make the pain and injury worse. Stay off your feet so that your body can recover faster and you won’t cancel out the good effects of icing your injury.
- Use a hot compress. After two or three days have passed and your hips and other injured areas are no longer swelling, you can apply a hot compress next. This is to encourage blood flow into the affected areas, which in turn helps with the healing process. The warm towel or compress bag can also soothe the remaining aches you feel from the fall. It can relieve the pain instantly and help the tense muscles loosen and relax.
- Do light exercises. Bed rest is fine on the first day of your injury, but you can’t do it for the rest of your recovery or it will be a very long one. Doctors and researchers say that light exercise can help strengthen the injured area and train the muscles to support the spine. Examples of these light exercises are walking and stretching. It bears mentioning, however, that you should only start exercising when your physician gives you permission. Don’t get ahead of yourself or else you might make your injury worse.
Help your body recover from a minor fall incident. Use these tips, and consult an expert on physical therapy to ensure your fast and safe recovery.