I strained my back - OUCH

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I have no problem with anyone handling themselves any way they wish. I only object of people who feel it necessary to criticize another's method of coping.
Steve
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SteveB wrote:

Exactly. As our instructor in the "Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs" class said while holding up an Opium poppy: "It's not all bad. If you have severe burns, terminal cancer, or a broken back, you'll thank God He put this little machine on the earth. Morphine is the standard by which all analgesics are measured."
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Noahbuddy wrote:

coincides with the normal time for tissue to heal :o)
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"Oren" wrote

Oren, you deleted the important part of where the symptoms mean doc NOW. Its extremely unlikely he has any of that numb genital region and hard to urinate, but that is NOT a time for a chiro.
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Oh! I mentioned that I collapsed in a drive way. What I did not say was it was only 15 minutes after the incident.
It took me 12 days to go for help an stop being foolish.
It hurt when I had too crawl and take care of business. Insurance covered the Chiropractor. Damn was I relieved.
Folks have to pick their poison.
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MiamiCuse wrote:

they hurt. I can't tell you what to do, other than see a doc if you feel the need. Especially if you have pain radiating down one leg. A family doc should be able to treat or refer if he/she sees the need. I'm a retired industrial nurse, so have given first aid for lots of back strain. If someone had a rather sudden or severe strain, I would ice it and recommend they use ice for the first 24 hours. Pretty much like an ankle strain. I've had back strains a couple of times that were painful for several weeks, once after lifting a friend's mother who was in a wheel chair. Use antiinflam. if you can tolerate - ibuprofen. A lot of docs feel Tylenol is better because it seems to have a muscle relaxing effect. Naproxen is good A firm mattress usually gives more relief for sore back. To get out of bed, it is better if you turn onto your side facing the edge of the bed, let your feet off the edge of the bed as you raise up onto elbow and then to sitting. Start using heating pad after 24 hours. Hot shower with water running onto back or, better yet, hot bath (provided you can get in and out of tub safely). From the amount of work you did you certainly qualify for a sore back.
I've had pretty painful muscle spasm in my back and neck; both resolved quickly. When I hurt my neck, is was sort of a freak whiplash. Didn't want to go to ER so I folded a towel and wrapped it around my neck to use as a neck brace. Spasms quit after about 12 hours; sore for a week or two.
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Ive had back problems all my life at points so serious I could not move for 7-10 days, dont go see a chiropractor first. Every injury is different, so there is no one right thing but if you can get on with everyday stuff that is best, sitting can make it worse. Muscles are the only thing protecting your lower spine and neck, that is why it got injured. Muscle relaxents can help if used early, pain meds can allow you to use it and hurt it more. If you can walk, go out and walk swimming helps many. Remember things heal, it may take years, or only weeks if its a muscle. You are not bedridden hating the pain of just getting up, so just dont do anything that hurts, but sitting all day can make it worse. Get a pros advise but dont rush anything. My back could go out so moving at all was near impossible, but the injury was such that rowing across the lake made it all better. But without knowing your issue it could most likely put you in the hospital as could a chiropractor, xrays cant see muscle damage or all injuries, other scans can. Go for a swim it usualy helps
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ransley wrote:

problem is acute and from overuse, then rest is best. If pain doesn't improve significantly in 2-3 days, I'd see an MD for sure. Also, if pain radiates one should see MD ASAP.
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On Mon, 15 Dec 2008 19:52:18 -0500, "MiamiCuse"

Back problems not not unusual. Usually it will heal slowly, maybe a month. You can use moist heating pads to help reduce the muscle tension. Do back exercises, but stop when it hurts. You range of motion will get better with each day of stretching. Doctors will only take your money. Good Luck.
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Health 101:
The back is a strong machine when it comes to carrying weight - a stack of bone that is braced by (hopefully) strong muscle, front (abdomen) and back. It works best for carrying weight when it is straight, which is why the stoop-and-lift technique is recommended. When force is applied to the muscles (cough, sneeze, lift) with the back flexed or twisted, then the force is transferred to the muscle. Ouch! This is where the leverage can pop a disc. If abdominal muscles are supporting 30# of fat (sorry, we all get a little too much out there at some time), then there is less support for the back and the lumbar muscles carry that much more of the load. By middle age, something like 40-50% of adults have "protruding" discs, although many don't know it. It is not pathological, in and of itself....normal part of change that comes with age. Improper activity at that age increases chance of further protrusion or rupture of the sac around the disc. There is a lot less surgery done for this than in the past because it can often heal as well without surgery, and often was not improved at all with surgery. But, sometimes surgery is absolutely necessary.
Busting sod and digging is rough work, esp. with implement that requires bending. I've gotten bad signals (a little pain down my leg) while digging long ago. Never lasted, thank heaven. The worst back pain I've had was when my daughter was about 2....sitting on the bed dressing her. When we were done, I lifted her and twisted while sitting to take her off the bed. Bang! I couldn't move and my back hurt intensely. Took about 10 minutes before I could stand, all the while thinking I might have to send a small child next door to get help.
Sometimes position is the problem, with not a lot of weight being involved. Even just a minimal strain, repeated often enough, can cause pretty severe pain........strain leads to swelling, which can cause other problems. have managed lots of back and repetitive motion problems in nursing. The best treatments, over all, are ice (heat later), rest, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory meds, and getting back in shape. A lot of industries in Japan have, for a long time, had warm-up exercises at the beginning of the work shift, just as athletes warm up before events. American companies have been slow to adopt good ergonomic function in the workplace, but many have......
Miami sounds like the pain is pretty severe.......from the posts he has made, it sounds like he does a lot of work. Call the doc when in doubt. Call the doc for sure if there is pain or numbness below the injury, or if the pain seems to be internal. I would not do stretching or bending or any other activity while it is very painful. Stretching is much better as a warm-up to activity and should be gradual, never extreme.
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stretch

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for my lower back,i do slow touch my toes from a standing up straight position. helps me alot, but every injury is different i guess.
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LOL. If I could touch my toes I wouldn't have back problems. ;-)
Olddog
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ROTFL!!
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I want to thank everyone for the constructive advise.
I am happy to report that my conditions have improved every day.
Sunday after I strained my back, I could not stand up or sit down without pain in the lower back. I was basically useless, walking was a real strain.
I had a night of sleep and Monday morning I woke up, and I felt a bit better, but turning in bed is sore. Getting out of bed was a real struggle. I could walk, but walk like a Frankenstein, no leaning in or anything. Again, sitting down and getting up was bad, but I could feel a general improvement. I did nothing but relax and slowly moving around. Did not go into work.
Tuesday I got up and felt better. Still trouble getting up and sitting down. I found the worst to do is to sit down in front of the computer to work, and then after an hour trying to get up makes it most painful. Seems the muscles hate being in that position, so I didn't do that much. I tried to go into work in the afternoon, I made it out to the driveway and got into the driver seat with some difficulty but I managed, but then I forgotten something in the house and had to get out and go back in...the getting out of the seat and planting my feet on the ground, that was a struggle, I decided going to work was not a good idea, especially I have not tried climbing stairs yet. So I went back in and stayed home. I did not do any exercise except to lay on my back and lift my knees slowly to my chest, very slowly, and I did that in small repetitions. Don't know if that makes it any better, but I don't think it made it any worse. I did not strain while I did it.
Today I got up and felt much better. Still walking like an Egyptian a bit, but I could slightly lean forward without pain.
I am hopeful that by the end of the week I will be back to normal except I don't think I can do any heavy duty work at the house for a few weeks.
I have not seen any MD or chiro yet. No, no numbness on my legs or anywhere.
MC
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See, I told you that would feel better when it quit hurting. Time is a good healer. For many problems.
Steve
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MiamiCuse wrote:

muscles, muscle strains, are TORN muscle fibers. I would not do any stretching.....it is kind of like taking a healing laceration and trying to spread it apart. Pain needs to heal. Heat probably will help comfort at this point, to make LIMITED movement easier. You are right, no heavy work for a few weeks.
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Sounds to me like you would benefit a lot from a muscle relaxant.
You would have to visit an MD.
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Good to hear. So many of us have actually felt the pain!

Kinda glad you didn't MC....since you would have driven yourself. How do you think it would have went if you had to jam on the brake suddenly?
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"MiamiCuse" wrote

Most welcome!

No need to see a Doc then unless you want some muscle relaxers but that might be costly if you dont have good insurance. Really, I'd just do as you have been as it seems sure to just be muscle strain with no nerve involvement or bone damage. That means if you are careful the next month, you'll be fine.
I love my rice bags. A friend mailed them to me. You can do the same thing with a tube sock pretty much. Just fill with uncooked rice and nuke for 1 min then put it at you back. Nice warmth you can carry around with you.
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