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5 years ago

For Minor Back Pain, Avoid Popping Pills

When it comes to visiting the doctor, low back pain is one of the most common reasons for Americans. Although it’s common to take pills for it, new treatment guidelines from the American College of Physicians recommend you should hesitate before opening the bottle of over-the-counter pain relievers—and definitely before taking opioid-based drugs. For pain not tied to an injury, heat and gentle stretches usually do the trick. For pain that has been present for fewer than 12 weeks, the recommendation is massage, spinal manipulation, acupuncture, and heat wraps. For longer pain, add in mind-body therapies like guided relaxation and tai chi. Even cognitive behavioral therapy can be helpful.