These are the three most common treatments for low back pain.

My name is Dr. David Geier – orthopedic surgeon, sports medicine specialist, and anti-aging and regenerative medicine expert. I help you feel, look and perform your best, regardless of age or injury.

Back pain is one of the most common health problems in the United States. In fact, about 80% of adults will experience back pain sometime during their lives. It’s important to treat low back pain as early as possible so that you can avoid more serious issues down the road.

Here are some common nonsurgical treatments for low back pain:

Physical therapy

Physical therapy can help you recover from low back pain. It can also help you get back to your normal activities, such as walking and doing household chores.

Physical therapy can also help you avoid surgery: A study published in the journal Spine found that patients who received physical therapy were less likely to require surgery than those who did not receive physical therapy. Physical therapists use exercises and specific movements to improve flexibility, strength, balance, posture and coordination – all of which are important for reducing the risk of future injury or re-injury. They’ll also teach you how to safely sit at a desk or drive long distances without straining your back muscles too much (or at all). Plus, you can often learn exercises and the proper way to do them with a physical therapist, and then you do them on your own at home.

Medication or injections

Medication is often used as a short-term solution for low back pain. Medications may be used to ease symptoms and provide immediate relief, but newer medications, such as pentosan polysulfate, might provide more lasting relief. Continued research will help us know if it or other medications can stop the damage in the lumbar spine. Injections can also be effective in reducing acute or chronic low back pain from conditions like degenerative disc disease.


Applying ice to the lower back for 20 minutes at a time, two or three times per day, can help decrease low back pain. The most effective way to use ice is with an ice pack or cold water. Do not place ice directly on your skin; in theory, it may cause frostbite and damage tissue underneath the skin.

Ice can be used for acute (short-term) pain caused by inflammation and swelling in muscles, tendons and ligaments around joints like those found in your lower back.


On the other hand, heat can be useful for low back pain. Heat can help loosen muscles and increase circulation to the area. Some people say that heat should be used only for milder cases of back pain because it can aggravate more severe forms of this condition (such as sciatica). If you have more severe symptoms such as numbness or tingling down one leg, then ice may be better suited for your needs than heat treatment methods would be.

There are many different ways to treat low back pain.

There are many different ways to treat low back pain. The treatments listed above are the most common, but they can be used in combination with one another. And if you have symptoms that aren’t resolving with these treatments – or if you have more serious symptoms such as pain that radiates down the leg, numbness, tingling or weakness in the leg or foot, then you might see a doctor or orthopedic surgeon sooner rather than later.

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This post is meant for educational and informational purposes only and should not be considered medical advice.