Here at Central Sydney Osteopathy, we believe self management is key to prevention and recovery of most injuries and conditions. Our practitioners will provide you with a guide to self management during your consultation. The information to follow should be used after consultation and as a reference only.
If you are in a lot of pain and can’t get to the clinic, here are a few hints to help you cope:
Drink plenty of fluids
Spinal discs are the driest part of the human body, and a person who is dehydrated will have discs which have become reduced in height, so the vertebrae become closer to each other. This makes it easier for nerves and sensitive surfaces to become irritated.
There is no benefit from being in pain, and analgaesia is useful as a short-term ‘coper’ until the true cause of the problem is addressed. Get professional advice from your GP or pharmacist.
Gently stretch spasmed muscles
Exercising or contracting a muscle which is in a painful spasm will only cause more contraction and pain. A short, spasmed muscle is already over-stimulated and it needs relaxation not work.
Don’t massage areas of acute pain
...especially in the acute neck or upper back. Massage brings blood into an already congested area, and the pain will get worse when the massage stops.
Use hot pack then and cold pack over areas of pain
leave the hot on for 5 minutes, and then replace it with the cold pack for 10 minutes. This 1: 2 hot-cold combination causes expansion of the underlying tissue and vessels, followed by contraction, which will encourage drainage and so reduce congestion & pain. This is especially helpful with neck pain.
For low back pain adopt the ‘astronaut’ position
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your calves resting up on a pile of cushions, a couch or chair, as it you are about to ‘blast off’ in the space ship. Stay there for up to 20 minutes, just resting. This opens up your low back and rests the deep back, abdominal and leg muscles which pull on the lumbar spine. Get up not by doing a sit up, but by rolling to the side, using your arms to push your body upright.
If you can’t get to this clinic, give us a call. We are happy to discuss your condition or refer you to a trusted colleague nearby. There are stitch sheets on this website that may help you.
If its not getting better, it could be something that needs a full examination, so see your GP or go to A&E.