Can Breathing Exercises Reduce Back Pain?SEMGeeks
Lower back pain is not an uncommon symptom to have. Worldwide, it’s the single leading cause of disability, preventing many people from engaging in work and other activities. In the United States alone, 31 million people experience low back pain at any given time.
There are a number of reasons why people experience low back pain. The back is a complicated structure of ligaments, bones, muscles and joints. If any of them are disrupted, they can cause persistent back pain. In addition, poor posture, obesity and psychological stress can cause or worsen discomfort.
Because of how debilitating back pain can be, people often visit pain management doctors for a quick fix. But simply taking medicine to numb the pain isn’t the best solution. People must also develop healthy lifestyle habits like keeping active and managing a healthy weight.
Breathing and Back Pain
Breathing is the one body function that we perform voluntarily and involuntarily. When breathing consciously, you can trigger the nervous system to react. This is why deep breathing is used to treat anxiety, depression, chronic pain and other conditions.
The muscles you use to breathe are connected to your lumbar vertebrae. Careful, controlled breathing lets you ease tension in these muscles, taking stress off your lumbar vertebrae and promoting proper spinal alignment. Most causes of back pain have to do with the bones, muscles or ligaments, so relaxing them can make a world of a difference.
Simple Breathing Exercises to Try
As you get more comfortable using breathing techniques, you’ll know which ones work best and be able to use them at a moment’s notice. Here are a few back exercises to try:
- Back-opening. For this exercise, find a comfortable position and sit upright. Breathe in and out sending the air toward your tailbone. Continue to breathe until you feel the air move up through your body. Then release by exhaling.
- 4-7-8. This technique has you sitting in a comfortable position. Put your tongue just behind your upper teeth and breathe out through your mouth. Close and breathe in for four seconds, hold your breath for seven seconds and breathe out completely for eight seconds.
- Diaphragm. Learning how to breathe from the diaphragm prevents shallow breathing. Sit comfortably, place one hand on your upper chest and the other below your rib cage. Inhale and exhale while keeping your hand on your body to feel the movement.
Deep breathing is an excellent tool to use when you’re dealing with a flare-up. By breathing properly, you can get yourself out of pain and be in better tune with your body. To learn more about breathing exercises and other holistic therapies that can help manage your back pain, schedule an appointment with Jersey Rehab today.