Low Back Muscle Spasm

What Is Low Back Muscle Spasm?

One presentation of low back pain is muscle spasm. This can accompany a low back strain or many other lumbar spine diagnoses. Low back muscle spasm presents as sudden, severe pain in part of the low back with decreased ability to move it for a time. For example, you are in a bent position and you cannot straighten up. That muscle is hard/tight to the touch compared to the other back muscles. It may appear swollen; for example, the right side of your low back looks bigger than the left. This can be present for a few minutes-hours and can come repeatedly over a number of days to several months, depending on your activities, movements and postures.

How To Treat Low Back Muscle Spasm:

It usually requires you to change positions, and the severity decreases if you find a relieving position such as lying on your side or getting onto hands and knees. Any new injury needs to be treated with ice for at least 2-3 days to minimize swelling and inflammation. Muscle spasm can be decreased with the use of heat to relax the muscle. If there is not significant swelling or internal inflammation, you can use heat to treat the pain associated with muscle spasms.

Medical Treatments for Low Back Muscle Spasm:

For this diagnosis, you will likely be prescribed muscle relaxers, anti-inflammatory medicine and/or pain relievers. Certain movements, positions or activities may need to be limited to prevent the spasm from returning (for example walking less, decreasing housework, or not playing your sport for a time). Other treatment options are Physical Therapy, chiropractic care, massage, and acupuncture.

How To Prevent Low Back Muscle Spasm:

If you prevent all other forms of low back pain, you will prevent low back muscle spasms. This means:

1. Practice good postures.

2. Practice good ergonomics and body mechanics.

3. Exercise regularly for your overall spine health.

4. Avoid a sedentary lifestyle because all tissues, including your spine, thrive on movement.

5. Do back extension exercises (moving spine in backward direction).

Published by lizbnavarr@gmail.com

I am a Physical Therapist and Ergonomics Consultant, based out of Columbia, SC. My passion is to write about and speak about pain/injury prevention. I started Pain Talks as a consulting business in 2018.

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