Acute back pain

Sudden attacks of acute back pain can be very painful, but this does not mean that you will always have a "bad back". Of course, most acute pain caused due to any chronic problems, but as soon as she passed, and the state of the mouse, ligaments and joints of the back has become less critical that you can do to eliminate chronic causes. The mainstay of treatment of attacks of acute back pain is a graded program of exercise in combination with rest. In this section you will learn what you need to do if you began the attack, and when to call a doctor, familiar with the step recovery program that includes exercise, postures, relaxation and self-help techniques.

Causes of acute pain

The most common cause of acute pain in the back are chronic, long-existing disorders, such as bad posture or weak muscles of the abdomen. These deviations can increase the load and stress on the spine and muscles of the spine to such an extent that happens their damage. Degenerative processes such as osteoarthritis and osteoporosis if their development has reached the stage of tissue damage, can also cause acute pain in the back. In such cases, in a day or two may occur temporary relief, but it is highly likely that the cramping will be repeated until, until you find and eliminate their chronic reason.

Chronic causes acute pain in the back

If the sharp pain is the result of damage caused by chronic disease, the most likely causes can be as follows.

  • Incorrect posture;
  • Weakness of the abdominal muscles;
  • Osteoarthritis;
  • Osteoporosis.

Mechanical causes of acute pain

Chronic conditions have not always been the main cause of acute back pain. Very often an attack may be provoked by movement, which in itself seems insignificant, for example the inclination for lying on the floor bag. In fact, the damage occurred a day or two before, in a not habitual physical stress. When the muscles are trying to protect the spine from the unusual load, they are very tense, like ligaments, vertebrae and discs. The next day the muscles harden and sore or relax to such an extent that it is not able to support the spine, while ligaments and joints have not yet returned to its normal condition. Such a purely mechanical failure destabilizie the whole system, and the result is a seemingly trivial movement may become the last straw that will cause a muscle spasm, sprain of ligaments, a ruptured disc or inflammation of the joint. The wrong weight lifting and tension with the unusual load — the typical causes of sharp back pain.

Improper lifting


Incorrect lifting, for example, when leaning forward to get stuff out of the trunk of the car, creates additional stress on the back. When you lift weights stooping, joints tense up stronger, and this leads to the fact that any already weakened joint, disc or ligament is unable to cope with the extra load.

Excessive or unusual physical exertion

Strenuous exercise, especially associated with rotations of the body (tennis or dance lessons), are often the cause of acute back pain. Some types of exercise movements directed mainly in one direction (bending forward), and involved only one group of muscles. The muscles of the opposite group have become stretched, weakened and no longer able to shrink and reject the case back. This means that the muscles and ligaments become strong enough or not flexible enough to withstand the increased load when turning the torso.

What to do when in pain?

If you experience a sharp pain first of all stop doing what you are doing, lie on the bed or on the floor, even if it means you have to crawl (the only exceptions to this rule are cases when you suddenly numb leg or both legs, you had an accident, fell or got a blow, see the questionnaire below). In the lying position, the load is removed from the spine, the pressure becomes four times lower than in the standing position. The reduced pressure can significantly relieve pain and allow the muscles covered by a protective spazmom, the ability to relax. You can also help yourself with effort, aimed at relaxing the mind and body: try not to worry about their forced immobility, no matter what you were doing when the attack began, it is possible to finish then.

What position to take

The best way to reduce pressure on the spine lie on your back. Try to lie down first, without a pillow, but if the pain is not gone, put it under his head. If necessary, place a pillow under your knees to the lumbar spine are not too curved. If the pain down to the legs, put a pillow under your lower legs so that hips and knees are aligned at a right angle, it will help to take the pressure off the sciatic nerve.

In some cases, the position lying on your back, won't ease the pain. If you find this position painful, try the maneuvers shown in the article rapid elimination of pain, to find the position in which pain is not felt. The answers to the questions suggested in the list below will help you determine how serious your problem is, and figure out what action to take.

How serious is the problem?

Using placed below the questionnaire you can figure out what to do in your case, but if you have any doubts, consult your doctor.

If your situation fits at least one of the following assumptions, don't move and ask someone to call an ambulance.

  1. You just had an accident.
  2. You recently dropped or severely bumped.
  3. You suddenly numb leg or both legs.

If your situation fits at least one of the following assumptions immediately consult a doctor. Call the district or contact the emergency room.

  1. You have chest pain, left arm or left side of the jaw.
  2. The pain persists and increases, it does not help and a change of position.
  3. You feel the growing weakness in the legs, accompanied by their numbness and possibly difficulty urinating and bowel movement.
  4. The pain is severe, prolonged, ceases only when tilted forward.

If your situation fits at least one of the following assumptions, consult your doctor in the coming days.

  1. You feel numbness or tingling in the arm or leg.
  2. The last time you lost weight and feel General malaise and fatigue.
  3. You are a woman, you have already had menopause.
  4. You are pregnant.
  5. You are a vegetarian or on a diet.
  6. You for over 60 years.

If your situation fits at least one of the following assumptions stay the day in bed, and if there is no improvement, consult a doctor.

  1. The character of the pain changes when you move or change the position of the body.
  2. You recently performed unaccustomed exercise is associated with a large load.
  3. You awkwardly turned or lifted a heavy object.

Rapid elimination of pain (first day)

If the position proposed in the previous article (What to do when in pain), is not convenient for you, try poses, described below, to find the position in which pain is not felt, and rest for 24 hours, but remember that exercise is strictly limited to the amount necessary to reduce inflammation and prevent immobility. Because the causes of pain in different people are different, you need to try every pose and every exercise and in this way find the ones you best help. If some change in body position, during exercise you feel that the pain subsided, take this resting pose. Conversely, do not remain in any posture, if the pain increases. Try movements on the bed, if you have a hard mattress, otherwise, use a gym Mat or rug.

Posture to eliminate pain

  • Lie on your stomach with hands at sides.
  • If the pain does not recede, put a pillow under the abdomen. If that does not work, gently turn the thigh and try on the right and on the left, since the efficiency of any movement is determined by the location of the damage. Put his head on his hands, so if you prefer.


If any exercise causes new or increased pain or increased circulation, immediately stop it. By continuing, you can make the problem worse. In the first two days here we offer the exercises should be repeated up to three times each about three times a day. The rest of the time just rest. Decreasing pain gradually increase number of repetitions up to a maximum of 10 times each exercise.

Pelvic tilt

  1. Lie on your back and bend your knees at a right angle, feet must stay on the floor.
  2. Flex the lower back, tearing the back from the floor, and then with force pull her to the floor. Ensure that the thorax remained motionless while the hips sway back and forth.
  3. Repeat the exercise three times, at the end of the exercise, the lower back must take a neutral position midway between the extreme. After two days, start to gradually increase the number of repetitions of this exercise to 10.

Rolling the knees

  1. Lie on your back and bend your knees, as in the previous exercise, but the thighs should rest on the floor.
  2. Shift the knee from side to side, dropping them to the floor as low as is comfortable. Repeat the exercise three times. After two days, start to gradually increase the number of repetitions to 10 times.

Elimination of pain (second day)

Once doctors believed that the best treatment of acute back pain is absolute peace, but it is now established that it is more efficient to alternate rest with exercise. If after 24 hours you don't feel any improvement, call your doctor, but if pain has decreased, add to recommended the article "Fast pain" exercises, are shown below. They help to prevent stiffness of the back muscles and thus reduce the likelihood of problems in the future and to maintain muscle tone and strength.

Deflection lying

  1. Lie on your stomach on a Mat or a rigid mattress, rising up on my elbows. Relax and stay in this position up to the count 10. Come down, relax; repeat the exercise three times.
  2. Repeat the first exercise, but this time rise up on your hands, not the elbows.

The knees

Lie on your back on a hard surface. Bend your knees at a right angle and tighten them to the chest. Hold them in this position up to the count 10, then slowly lower feet to the floor. Repeat three times.

Tilts to the side

Stand straight with feet spread shoulder width apart. Slightly diverting one hip to the side, the same side where the slide arm on the leg downwards, you will feel the tension on the other side of the hull. Repeat three times. Then complete the exercise in the other direction.

The extension of the back

  1. Original position as when bending to the side, hands on hips. Slightly bending back, joining shoulders and slightly lifting his chin, but not so high to look at the ceiling. Repeat three times.
  2. After completing the last repetition, before you can complete the exercise in a neutral, vertical position, slightly lean forward, rounding shoulders.


Stop immediately if any exercise causes new or increased pain or increased circulation. By continuing, you can make the problem worse. In the first two days here we offer the exercises should be repeated up to three times each about three times a day. The rest of the time just rest. Decreasing pain gradually increase number of repetitions to maximum 10 times each exercise.

The road to recovery

If the pain gradually recedes (if not, consult your doctor), then after two days of rest, and exercise can resume a normal life. To restore mobility and flexibility, it is important that you be as active as possible; of course, you should not do anything that could interfere with final recovery. But now it makes sense to relax on your back for an hour or so each day to give the tissue time for healing and self-healing.

If the pain returns

If you're not careful and follow the rules that are listed in the table below, there is a threat that by making an awkward move, you break all the work done, and this will lead to the resumption of back pain. If this happens, immediately stop work and lie down on a hard surface face down or on your back, or accept that position, which previously has contributed to the elimination of pain.

Lying on your side

This position is not so favorable for your spine, like the others, but it so happens that you are comfortable only in this position. In this case, place a pillow between the knees to the thigh on top, not pushed forward, causing twisting of the lower spine. Can also be useful to put another pillow against the abdomen and chest as a cushion, like you're hugging it to support the spine from the front. Do not put more than one pillow under your head, especially if you have a pain in the neck or upper back.

What to do and what not to do to recover

Two days later you have to get out of bed finally and to return to normal activities. But do not forget the following:

What not to do

  • Do not lift or stoop.
  • Do not do heavy housework: do not vacuum, do not get out, do not iron.
  • Do not make steep climbs and descents.
  • Do not wear gravity, such as shopping, suitcases, mountains of wet clothing.
  • Do not start the sports activities associated with heavy load.
  • Do not sit or stand for long periods without changing posture.