Lower back pain is any discomfort or pain in the lumbar spinal region, which is located between the ribs of the lower back and the pelvis. Pain can range in intensity from mild up to severe. It may be caused by a variety of conditions, including arthritis, herniated disks, poor posture and other illnesses.

Lower back pain is a common problem that can affect people of all ages. It can be acute, lasting a short time, or chronic, lasting longer than three months. People with lower back pain can find relief through medication, physical therapy or exercise depending on the severity and underlying cause of the problem. [1]

Lower back pain causes

There are different types of lower back pain depending on the symptoms and causes. Below are some common causes of lower-back pain:

  • Mechanical lower-back pain: The commonest type of lower-back pain is caused by a strain or injury in the muscles, ligaments, or joints of the lower spine. This causes localized pain that gets worse when you move.
  • Lower Back Pain: This form of lower back discomfort is caused by the compression or irritation of the nerve roots in the lower spine. The pain can be intense and may even go down to the leg. Sciatica is a different name for it.
  • Referred Lower Back Pain: This lower back pain is caused by other parts of the body such as the hip, pelvis or abdomen. It can be difficult to identify the discomfort because it may be dull or achy.
  • Wear-and-tear of the spine:Lower Back Pain that is Degenerative is caused by the wear-and tear of your spine, such arthritis or a herniated disk. The discomfort may be persistent and worsen over time.
  • Injury or strain: Lower-back pain that is sudden and usually caused by an injury or a strain is called acute lower-back pain. Even though the pain may be intense, it usually subsides in a few weeks or days. [2]
  • Chronic Pain: Lower Back Pain that is chronic can last longer than three months. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including underlying medical conditions or degenerative diseases.

Consult a healthcare professional to determine the exact cause of your lower back pain. They can then create a treatment plan that is suitable for you.

How to relieve lower back discomfort

Here are some tips to help you relieve lower back pain.

Photograph: YuriArcursPeopleimages/Envato

Take over-the counter pain relievers

Over-the-counter painkillers such as acetaminophen or naproxen, which reduce inflammation and discomfort, can help to treat lower back pain. It is important to follow the dosage recommendations on the label. Consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have about the dosage. Overusing painkillers may have negative side effects, and may not treat the underlying cause for your lower back pain.

Use heat and ice therapy

Heat treatment can be very effective if you suffer from chronic or persistent lower back pain. It works by improving the blood flow and relaxing the muscles. You can use a heating mat, a hot-water bottle, or heated bath to apply heat treatment. Heat therapy should be used for no longer than 20 minutes to avoid burning the skin.

Ice treatment can relieve lower back pain that has an abrupt or rapid onset. Use frozen vegetables, ice packs, or ice wrapped in a towel to relieve discomfort. Apply for no more than 20 minutes at a given time.


Regular stretching and exercises can help reduce lower back pain by improving the flexibility, strength and mobility of the back. [3] Start with easy exercises and stretches, and then increase the intensity as you get stronger and more flexible.

It’s important to consult a healthcare professional before beginning any new exercise or stretching program. This is especially true if you have had lower back pain or an accident in the past.

Maintain good posture

Good posture can help ease lower back pain by reducing the strain on the muscles, ligaments and vertebrae in the lower spine. Poor posture can cause your lower spine to curve excessively. This puts additional strain on your muscles, discs and vertebrae. This can cause lower back pain and stiffness.

Proper posture allows your lower back muscles to work more efficiently and with less effort by distributing your weight evenly. Good posture not only keeps your spine in neutral alignment but also reduces the risk of spinal misalignment, and back pain.

Chiropractic care

Chiropractic treatments can effectively treat lower back discomfort. Chiropractic doctors are medical experts who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment musculoskeletal disorders, including lower back pain.

Chiropractic treatment for lower back discomfort may include spinal adjustments, which are gentle manipulations of vertebrae that can realign them, increase joint mobility and reduce pain and swelling. Chiropractors may recommend alternative treatments such as massage, stretches and exercise to treat lower back pain.


Acupuncture, an ancient Chinese medical practice, involves the insertion of thin needles into specific body sites. Acupuncture is believed to ease pain by activating the body’s natural healing mechanisms.

Acupuncture can be used to treat lower back pain. Acupuncture, it is said, increases blood flow, reduces inflammation, and releases endorphins that act as natural pain relievers.

In studies, acupuncture has been shown to be an effective treatment for persistent lower-back pain. In one study, people who received acupuncture to treat lower back pain reported greater improvement in pain and functional ability than those who received conventional medical treatment.

Herbal remedies

Herbal treatments can relieve pain and inflammation by numbing this area. Many herbal medicines contain anti-inflammatory components that can reduce swelling and discomfort of the muscles and joints in the lower back. Some plants, such as white willow and devil’s paw, contain chemicals similar to aspirin that can reduce pain and inflammation.

Some herbs, such as ginger and turmeric, contain substances that can help boost circulation and promote healing in the affected area. [4] Lower-back discomfort and stiffness can be reduced as a result.

It is important to remember that herbal therapies are not for everyone. It’s important to consult a doctor before using any herbal remedies. They may interact with other prescriptions, or have unwanted side effects. Herbal medicine should be used in conjunction with other treatments prescribed by a doctor, including dietary changes, physical activity and other therapies.


Stretching can help to reduce lower back pain. These stretches may be helpful to you:

Stretching from the knee to the chest


  • On a soft surface such as a yoga mat, carpeted flooring, or a mat, lie on your stomach.
  • Bend both knees and place your feet on the ground.
  • As you exhale, bring your knee up to your chest.
  • Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds.
  • Extend the opposite leg after releasing the first leg.
  • Repeat the stretch on each side two to three more times.
  • As you become more familiar with the stretch, try bringing both knees up to your chest at once.

Cat-cow Stretch


  • Place your wrists and knees under the hips, starting from a kneeling stance.
  • Take a deep inhale as you lower your belly down to the floor, arch your back and raise your head and tailbone up to the ceiling. The cow stance should be as shown.
  • Exhale while curving the spine, bringing your stomach button up into your back, and tucking in your chin to your chest. The cat stance should be as shown.
  • Continue to move with your breath between the cow and cat. Inhale for the cow pose and exhale for the cat position.
  • Repeat this as many times as you feel comfortable, for 5 to 10 deep breaths.
  • You can also alternate between the cow and cat positions, incorporating a mild hip movement.
Photograph: koldunov/Envato

Child pose


  • Place your knees and wrists underneath your hips, starting from a kneeling position.
  • Bring your hips toward your heels while keeping your arms in front of you.
  • If you find it more comfortable, place the block or cushion beneath your forehead.
  • Take a few deep breathes and let your chest fall toward the floor. As you do this, you should feel a slight stretch in your thighs and lower back.
  • Hold the stretch as long as you feel comfortable, between 30 to 1 minute.
  • To exit the pose, slowly roll up into a sitting position.

Piriformis stretch


  • On a soft surface such as a yoga mat, carpeted flooring, or a soft floor, lie flat on your back.
  • Bend both knees and place your feet on the ground.
  • As you cross one knee over the other, your ankle should be just above the other.
  • Stretch your buttocks and outer hips of the crossed leg using your hands. Gently draw the uncrossed foot towards your chest.
  • Repeat the stretch on the opposite leg.
  • Repeat the stretch on each side two to three more times.
  • You can deepen the stretch by bringing the uncrossed knee closer to your chest and gently pressing the crossed knee with your hand.

Hamstring stretch


  • On a soft surface such as a yoga mat, carpeted flooring, or a yoga mat, lie on your stomach.
  • Keep your foot flat while bending your knee.
  • Wrap the ball of the other foot with a cloth or a strap.
  • Slowly straighten your leg towards the ceiling by gently pulling your foot towards your head using the strap.
  • Keep your other leg at an angle that is comfortable and your lower back on the floor.
  • Hold the stretch for 15-30 seconds to feel a stretch in the back of the leg and calf.
  • After releasing the strap, stretch the opposite leg.
  • Repeat the stretch on each side two to three more times.
  • Try extending your foot towards your head while holding the strap. This will make the stretch deeper.

[1] https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007425.htm

[2] https://www.webmd.com/back-pain/what-helps-with-lower-back-pain

[3] https://www.goodrx.com/well-being/movement-exercise/stretches-lower-back-pain

[4] https://www.spine-health.com/blog/7-ways-relieve-back-pain-naturally