When you have chronic back pain, your daily routine can get complex—but there are simple things you can do every day to help ease the pain.

Sitting with good posture means each part of the body is in alignment with the neighboring parts. Read: Good Posture Helps Reduce Back Pain

1. Support your spine at your desk
Sitting for prolonged periods of time can seriously aggravate your back pain. This is because sitting places a significant amount of pressure on your back muscles and spinal discs.

Furthermore, sitting in a hunched-forward position can overstretch your spinal ligaments and place even more stress on your spinal discs.

Here are a few tips to help support your lower back while you sit:

  • Adjust your office chair so your knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle.
  • 2 fingers should slip easily between the bottom of your thigh and your chair.
  • The backrest of your chair should push your lower back forward slightly. You can use a small pillow if your chair does not provide this support.
  • Place support under your feet to elevate them slightly. Sitting with your knees slightly higher than your hips eliminates some of the pressure on your lumbar spine.
  • Your back and buttocks should be pressed against your chair for support.
  • Keep your chin pulled in and your head tall.
  • Sit as close to your desk as possible.
  • Adjust you computer screen so it is at eye level.

In addition, you may also find relief through an unusual office set-up. For example, using a standing desk or sitting on a yoga ball may bring much-needed relief from your chronic back pain.

Even if you sit with perfect posture, your lower back still needs to move. So make sure to get up and move around every 30 minutes while at the office.

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If you suffer from chronic back pain, you likely need to spend more time at home than most people. This isn’t because you’re lazy or a recluse—you simply need time to rest and recover. But due to this time spent at home, you may feel isolated from friends and family members.

1. Join a walking group

Low-impact aerobic exercise is part of most chronic pain treatment plans. So if you already need to be exercising, why not join in with others who are doing the same thing?

See Low-Impact Aerobic Exercise

You can likely find a walking group in your area by way of a quick internet search, and you can also try contacting a local senior center or park district. In addition to the new friends you are likely to meet, you may also find relief from your back pain. This is because walking both spurs the release of pain-fighting endorphins and encourages the flow of healing oxygen and nutrients.

See Exercise Walking for Better Back Health

Don’t sweat it if you are not able to keep up with the rest of your walking group at first. Like anything worth doing, it can take time to build up your walking endurance. So don’t over-exert yourself—instead gradually increase your walking time and distance.

See Techniques for Effective Exercise Walking

2 Take advantage of the Spine-health forums

The forums on the Spine-health website are very popular, and many people use them as a place to share tips for coping with their various ailments. But our forums are also a great place to share your emotional struggles with chronic back pain, and to find support and encouragement if you are feeling lonely.

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Cold and heat therapy may both provide effective relief from your lower back pain—but how do you know which one to use?

Ice in the first 24 to 72 hours

As a general rule, it is best to apply cold therapy to your lower back in the first 24 to 72 hours following your lower back injury. The application of cold therapy can minimize your inflammation and swelling—which in turn may reduce your pain. In addition, ice can decrease your tissue damage and numb your sore tissues.

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If you suffer from chronic sciatica, you are intimately familiar with the annoyance of constant flare-ups of symptoms like leg pain or numbness in your foot.

Of course, no single remedy works for everyone—but these 3 simple items may help you find relief from your pesky symptoms:

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