See a health professional if your low back pain is:
- right after a fall or accident
- present for more than a month
- making it hard to stand or walk
- causing leg weakness
- causing loss of urinary or bowel control
- associated with unintentional weight loss
- associated with fever, chills, or sweating
- worse during or right after an exercise
- no better after a week of home exercises
For safe self treatment it's best to do the exercises in the sequence they are listed. If no relief with a position of ease, stop the sequence and try a different low back pain routine (see subsequent posts). If pain is worse with a myofascial stretch, stop the treatment before attempting a joint mobilization and try again later. Some lower back problems are better treated with more specific routines that will be provided in subsequent posts.
LUMBAR POSITION OF EASE
|Lumbar position of ease (WVSOM)|
- Lie face down with a pillow or two under your pelvis on the side of back pain;
- If comfortable, take a few deep breaths and rest in this position for 2-5 minutes. If no relief with this position, move the pillows down to in front of the lower thigh just above the knee and rest for another 2-5 minutes;
- Proceed to a lumbar extensor stretch or slowly roll to one side before getting up;
- Use this position of ease 2-4 times a day or as needed for pain relief.
LUMBAR EXTENSOR STRETCH
- Lie on your back and grasp both knees with your hands. If knee pain occurs, instead grasp the back of the thighs just above the knees;
Lumbar extensor stretch (WVSOM)
- Take a few deep breaths and stretch for 10-20 seconds;
- Proceed to a lumbar self-mobilization or slowly roll to one side before getting up;
- Do this stretch 2-4 times a day.