Are heat ointments good for your back pain?
Heat creams, ointments and heat patches contain skin irritants. The active ingredients present in the ointments create a reaction that results in blood rushing to the applied area to promote warmth and healing.
The blood rushing to the surface of the skin, along with the irritation create the hot sensation. Muscles will also warm up in the process of blood rushing to the area, which is why the use of heat ointments are so prevalent in sporting change rooms and even more commonly now in the workplace.
Whilst these ingredients are not overly harmful to the body, continuous daily use is not ideal.
As the smell of ointment often brings comments of a football change room, the use of heat ointments regularly to assist with the symptoms of back pain is not ideal, especially if you work in an office or are in direct contact with clients.
Alternative options to heat ointments:
- Hot shower first thing in the morning
- Really hot bath prior to activity
- Use of hot water bottle
- Use of wheat bag heated in the microwave
- Sports massage prior activity
Heat ointments are terrific for getting through a sports activity, or a day's work after waking up with a stiff back. However, if you do suffer from an ongoing achy back, forming a habit of using a wheat bag placed in the microwave with a small cup of water is most optimal.
The steam held in the wheat penetrates deep into the muscles of the lower back often reaching the areas where people experience discomfort. Hot baths are even better as the entire back and hip region is immersed in hot water which has a greater benefit on the restricted connective tissue of the lower back which is another common source of discomforting back pain.
If you need to get through an activity or can't take the day off work, heat ointments are a great method of assistance. However, if you find you are requiring heat as a form of pain relief on a daily basis, we definitely recommend looking for a preferable alternative and addressing the cause of your pain, not just the symptoms.
Back Solution across America has a proven record with acute and chronic back pain sufferers exceeding in excellence across the country. We have treated thousands of patients that range from Olympic athletes, professional athletes as well as everyday pain sufferers. Our rapid growth across the country will ensure a local clinic will be in your area soon to address you acute and chronic back pain.