Lifestyle

Looking Good Without Surgery

By Margrit Bradley | Beauty

We’ve all heard about face-lifts, liposuction and Botox, but what if we want to stay attractive as we get older without resorting to expensive and invasive procedures?

It really starts with anti-aging mind games; in other words your inner dialogue. Something is only the truth until new information comes along to contradict it. To change a belief, you must first identify what it is that is working against you. “I’m too old to join an aerobics class.” “It is all downhill from here.” Then come up with a positive thought that will give you energy rather than drain you. “I’m five years younger than that marathon runner I read about.” “I feel better today than I did ten years ago.” Write it down. Repeat it five times a day and start collecting evidence to support it. Even if it is not completely true, keep acting and thinking as if it is. Whenever you catch yourself focusing on what you no longer want to think, switch your focus by asking: “what could be a more helpful way of looking at this?”

BE OPTIMISTIC

Think of the best areas of your life, whether they be work, relationships or friends. Tell yourself something is easy to do and it probably will be. You can create your own results by choosing something about yourself you would like to feel better about (your health, your fitness, your weight) and switch your attitude about it. Try to expect good things: (I’m never ill. I look better in my clothes already). Dress attractively, update your make-up, and ask your hairdresser to take 10 years off you. What did you love doing 10 years ago? Bowling? Camping? Hiking? Try it again and see how you feel at the end.

TRY NEW MAKE-UP

We tend to get into a rut with our make-up, and think the old rules can not be broken. However some of them have become obsolete as new formulas evolved.

It used to be that shimmery make-up was strictly for the evenings, but it can be flattering in the day-time too. Today’s formulas are no longer garish and can actually make you look younger because they contain finely-ground, light-reflecting particles that give skin a soft glow. Shades like camel or pink are good, but limit the luminous look to just one feature. If you choose a pearl eye-shadow or lipstick, keep your cheeks matte finish.

Once it was the rule that lipstick should match the rest of your make-up. Today’s trend is to match it to your skin. Look for one that complements your lips’ natural pigment … pinky brown, nude, soft rose or berry are flattering shades.

Lips sometimes thin after 40. If so, use light to medium lipstick and gloss and choose creamy, shiny formulas as they reflect light, creating an illusion of fullness. Strengthen your lipline and stop lipstick “weeping” by tracing the outer edge of natural border using a lipliner that is one shade deeper than your lipstick.

You do not need to cover your whole face with foundation. You can just spot treat blotchy areas. Apply a tinted base to uneven or red areas, such as nose, cheeks or chin. Using your fingertips or a cosmetic sponge, dab some on and blend outwards towards your jaw and hairline.

If you have decided to let your hair go grey, it can look chic but the lack of pigment does suck the color from your complexion. You need to give your face “oomph”. Use a medium tinted foundation to even out your skin. Go for soft, bright shades such as rose, apricot or peach. Defining your eyes with a silver of slate shadow will also perk up your grey hair look. Do not forget to use a rich moisturizer every day.

It may be true that every woman has the face she deserves by 40, as Coco Chanel once said, and we can not all look like models. But we can keep an optimistic, upbeat outlook and remember that the best facelift in the world is a smile.

 

Five Symptoms to Never Ignore

By Elizabeth Danish | Pediatrics

One of the most difficult things for any parent is when their child gets sick. New parents especially may panic at the first signs of illness or distress, and it is so difficult to know what your child needs. There are times when there is nothing to do except offer extra snuggles and kisses, but there are also times that call for a trip to the ER.

The trick is learning which symptoms could be extremely dangerous and which ones will pass on their own. The golden rule, however, is when in doubt, GO. Call your pediatrician anytime you are unsure, and if they are not available, there is no harm in taking your child to the hospital just to make sure there’s nothing serious going on. Just to give you an idea of things to be on the lookout for, here are five symptoms that should never be ignored and elicit a trip to the emergency room.

Fever

Fevers are tricky because they are one of those things that fill you with panic as soon as the number pops up on the thermometer but can also be present with no effect on your child. With an infant, a fever of 100.4 or higher is extremely dangerous and your baby needs to be seen immediately. Even if your baby seems okay, fevers that are caused by anything bacterial can spread infection throughout the body. The effects of a fever on an infant can be detrimental or even fatal.

For toddlers and older children, be on the lookout for temperatures over 103 degrees. At this age, your child’s behavior is more of an indicator than the number. If your child seems to be doing alright, try treating the fever with Tylenol. If the fever persists, have them seen by a doctor.

There are other symptoms that accompany fevers that you also need to be on the lookout for. A persistent fever that is unaffected by acetaminophen or ibuprofen is a possible cause for alarm and your pediatrician should definitely be called. Also a fever that lasts more than 3-5 days needs medical attention.

If your child is complaining of a headache along with a fever or even a stiff neck, they need to be seen immediately. If there is a rash made up of little red dots or that looks like a bruise present along with the fever, they also need medical attention. All of these are possible signs of meningitis and will not go away without medical help.

Tummy Troubles

While children are notorious for claiming to have “tummy aches” at any given time, there are times when you need to take them seriously. If your child is complaining of pain on the right side of their abdomen, it could be a sign of appendicitis. One way to know if it’s something to be concerned about is to have your child jump. If this causes serious pain, it’s time to head to the hospital. Appendicitis cannot be treated at home and requires immediate surgery to remove the appendix and avoid possible serious complications.

Children under the age of four are susceptible to a disorder called intussusception which is where one part of the intestines actually slides over into the other. Your child may suddenly be in excruciating pain and then be fine the next minute and this will happen every 20 to 60 minutes. Other signs of this disorder include fever, vomiting, and even blood in their stool. If your child is displaying signs of pain along with any of the other symptoms, do not wait; head to the nearest emergency room.

Headaches

Sadly, even the tiniest children are susceptible to headaches. If your child complains of headaches first thing in the morning or if they are awoken by headaches in the middle of the night, they need to be seen. Often these are signs of migraines, which if you’ve ever experienced them, you know they are excruciating.

Often, headaches that occur only in the middle of the night or when first awakening can be a sign of serious internal or neurological issues that need immediate attention to properly diagnose and treat.

Dehydration

Infants are definitely the most difficult to understand when it comes to illness. For the most part they just cry, no matter what it is that’s bothering them. They can’t show or tell you what’s wrong and you are left feeling like a detective as you observe them for the cause of the problem.

Some very clear signs that your baby needs medical attention are:

• Dry mouth or lips

• Decreased urine output

• Dry skin

• Skin that stays pinched together when you press it

• Excess diarrhea or vomiting

• Flat fontanel (soft spot on top of the head)

These symptoms are signs of dehydration and your child needs fluids immediately. If they are constantly vomiting or have diarrhea, anything you are giving them is coming right back out. The younger your baby, the quicker you need to get them to the hospital.

Watch the Mouth

Your child’s mouth can tell you a lot about what is happening and what needs to be done. If your child suddenly has swollen lips or a swollen tongue, it is usually a sign of anaphylaxis; a serious allergic reaction. If the swelling is accompanied by vomiting or itching, you need to call 911 immediately. These symptoms usually lead to a swelling of the throat which will cut off your child’s airway.

Discoloration around the mouth, particularly if it is blue, is another sign that you need emergency help. If your child has blue lips and is struggling to breathe, it could be from a few different things, but no matter what it is, it needs attention.

Breathing issues can be caused by choking, allergic reactions, pneumonia, croup, asthma, or even whooping cough. Any sign of blue or discoloration around your child’s mouth means a lack of oxygen and elicits a call to 911.

Common Causes of Menstrual Irregularities

By Jason Ladock | Menstruation Pain

There are many women who suffer from menstrual irregularities at some point in their life. The problem can significantly affect a woman’s life and if the condition is not given attention it can even worsen. Women, in normal terms, maintain a pattern of period that is ideally 28 days, but no one is completely regular. It can vary from 23 days to 35 days. But, women having their periods roughly on the same date every month are considered to be regular. At a certain age, the frequency of the periods fluctuates, making it difficult for the woman to track the date.

Menstrual irregularities are also called as anovulatory periods, this indicates that the woman does not develop and is unable to release a mature egg regularly every month. Women respond differently to the condition and hence, the menstrual irregularities are also of different types. The reason behind the menstrual irregularity can be divided into physical and psychological. The psychological reasons are not as common as the physical reasons.

Let us first see the physical causes of the menstrual irregularity. The hormones like estrogen and progesterone have the major say in the menstrual cycle as they are responsible for regulating ovulation during the menstrual cycle. The body of a woman requires a balance between these hormones and any kind of imbalance can lead to the inability to ovulate regularly, and this will lead to menstrual irregularity. This is the reason why maintaining a healthy body and hormone level is very important.

It is important to have a regular balanced diet and exercise on a schedule so that you can maintain a healthy lifestyle, and also keep a balanced level of hormones in the body. If the problem still persists, even after bringing about lifestyle changes, then you should try alternative medicines after consulting your physician.

The psychological causes of menstrual irregularities include anxiety, daily emotional stress and fatigue due to overwork. If these factors are not put into control, then they can cause an emotional instability leading to a stressed body and also bring about alterations, which can lead to menstrual irregularities. It is important that you take out time everyday to relax and relieve your stress. Find things that you enjoy doing and make it a schedule to relieve stress every day. Take breaks from work and relax completely without taking any tensions and worries.

There are also women who have a combination of physical and psychological causes behind their menstrual irregularities. There are also certain medical conditions like cysts and hereditary factors that can affect the menstrual cycle. In any case, try to being about some lifestyle changes. If these do not bring about an effect in your condition, then you should consult your gynecologist who can guide you well and also prescribe some medications to help you deal with the condition. The physical causes are more likely to affect the cycle, so first try to focus on your lifestyle and then if nothing works get medical help.

DRY SKIN TREATMENT REMEDIES

Dry skin needs special care. You need to strike the perfect balance between cleansing, replacing lost moisture, and exfoliating the skin each day. Here are some DRY SKIN TREATMENT REMEDIES that will help you care for your skin.
Cleansing –The first step is cleansing your skin. You will need to choose two different cleansers- one for your face, one for your body and one for your feet Treat. Look for a body wash that is creamy and contains extra moisture. For the face, cleansing milks and moisturizing cleansers work a lot better than harsh soaps. For an extra treat, choose a product that will also help cleanse and soften your feet. Wash your feet and body each time you shower and your face and neck twice a day, in the morning and at night.
Exfoliating – Though exfoliating does strip the skin of moisture, getting rid of dead skin cells will make it softer and less dry in the long run. In general, you will want to gently EXFOLIATE your SKIN EVERY DAY. To exfoliate your body, use a dry bath brush (Spa Brush) on your dry skin and brush from the feet upward in a circular motion. Do not use this method to exfoliate your face.
A better DRY SKIN TREATMENT REMEDY for removing the dry skin cells in your face is an extremely gentle, non abrasive exfoliant. Check the package directions but a gently exfoliating ingredient is alpha hydroxy acid, especially when the product only has a low concentration of it.
Toning – A good toner will help replace any moisture lost during cleansing and will restore the proper PH balance. Choose one that contains ingredients that are beneficial to dry skin, such as rosewater. Check the packaging to make sure you can use the product on dry skin. You only need to do this step on your face and neck.
Moisturizing – This is one of the most important steps. Cleansing and exfoliating can strip the skin of its natural moisture. A good moisturizer will help replace the natural oils in the skin. Different products in the moisturizer serve different purposes. You can find a moisturizer that will help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, eliminate dryness, and control break-outs. Make sure any product you choose is specifically tailored for dry skin.
To moisturize your body, look for a heavier formula that doesn’t contain as much water. Body butters work especially well. You can also use scented or unscented body oil. The eyes also need a special product because the skin is so delicate, you can’t put a moisturizer with harsh ingredients on it.
Masking – Using a face or body mask is optional, but worth the effort. You can either choose to make your own or purchase a product for dry skin. A good mask will help exfoliate, tone, and moisturize the skin. One of my favorite homemade masks is plain honey, applied to the face and neck. Honey helps exfoliate and is a humectant, which means that it draws moisture to the skin.

Composition Of A Good Nutrient Rich Diet

By Michele Tamez.

For the human body to function well, it should be fed a good balance of vitamins and nutrients. There are three primary macronutrients which we consume namely protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Without these, our body won’t be able to function properly. Since we cannot synthesize vitamins in sufficient quantities, they must be obtained from dietary sources. We also need several minerals for our body to function smoothly. Calcium and phosphorous, for example, aside from being important in the strengthening and lengthening of your bones are needed by your heart to pump efficiently. Salt, aside from adding flavor to your dishes, contain sodium and chlorine which help in maintaining fluid balance and producing digestive juices, respectively. Mineral salts are ionic in nature, they help regulate pH levels in our blood and body. Maintenance of proper pH levels is crucial for the proper functioning of the body, a balanced supply of necessary mineral nutrients ensures that natural pH balance is maintained. There are also minerals which you require in lesser amounts of such as iron, iodine and zinc.

While only minute levels are required, several ailments will emanate from not being able to meet the recommended dietary allowance overtime. You can get both macrominerals and trace elements from dietary sources. If your diet is deficient is essential nutrients, taking dietary supplements on a regular basis is recommended. Beside mineral nutrients, the body needs water, you need to keep your body hydrated. 6 to 8 glasses of water a day is more than sufficient for the average person, if you have an active lifestyle, your requirement will be higher. Taking the adequate amounts of fluids is essential for the growth and maintenance of your body. It is also important in the elimination of unneeded and harmful substances from your system. Alkaline water, called so because of its slightly alkaline pH, is believed to benefit the body by reducing blood acidity. This trend is brought about by the heightened awareness of the public to alkaline water benefits.

The manufacturers of alkaline water additives claim that the regular consumption of alkaline water protects against cancer and may even slow down aging. Also called ionized water, this water preparation is mineral-rich and consequently keeps the blood pH at a neutral state. It is believed that certain food items, most notably carbonated drinks and junk foods, can make the blood acidic. When not neutralized, blood that is too acidic can have deleterious effects, like lethargy and abnormal heart rhythms. Still there are those who do not believe in these alkaline water benefits saying further that these are overstated. The argument between believers and non-believers essentially fuels interest for the product. Ultimately, the users are the only people who can testify whether or not alkaline water works, and the present consensus is that it works.

Ways to make your skin healthy

 
The primary step to keeping your skin healthy is preventing damage. Pollutants, air, sun as well as by just natural aging can certainly mortify the form of your skin. Frequent grumbles incorporate dry along with itchy skin, sagging, wrinkles, color alterations, together with age spots. Luckily, there are various methods that you can readily apply in order to maintain a healthy skin, feeling and looking at its most excellent appearance.
 
Keeping yourself fit, having enough rest, as well as getting healthy diet can set the basis for fine-looking and vigorous complexion. Moreover, a proper diet is not only the excellent way in attaining good health in general but it as well assists you to guarantee that your skin will get all of the vitamins and minerals, along with the nutrients that it requires to preserve and fix itself. Another way to keep your skin healthy is to apply the right skin care products to your skin. The best anti aging skincare products that can aid you to hydrate the skin are now available at your favorite skin care product store online. Having a clean skin by using the best skin cleanser is also a great way of preventing skin damages.
 
One of the most essential ways to protect your skin is to keep it away from the harmful rays of the sun. Ultraviolet radiation harms the skin as well as it can result to wrinkles, premature aging, age spots or even cancer as well. An individual should really get further preventative measures in order to be certain that his or her skin is not totally exposed under the harmful rays of the sun. Do not fail to remember that one should apply a natural sunscreen, or a moisturizer that includes sunscreen (with minimum of SPF 15) every day. Although, it does not mean that you should not go out at all during the day, as if you are like a nocturnal creature.
 
Your skin also needs some sunlight every day. A 10 to 15 exposures at sunrise or sunset will be alright. In addition to that, a variety of fine skin care products such as an all natural moisturizer is one of the essential components for a vigorous complexity. Keep on moisturizing all through the day to keep your sensitive skin vigorous. Your hands as well as your face is especially vulnerable to everyday dent, and might require it to be moisturized further.
 

A List Of Healthy Food To Eat While Pregnant

By: Josef Bichler

If you are expecting your first child or eagerly awaiting a new addition to your growing family, your nutrition should be of utmost importance to you. Remember that whatever you take in will be taken in by your unborn baby too, so be wary of the foods you serve on your plate and study the nutritional value they have instead of how good they taste for your palate. To help you choose the right foods that will keep you and your baby healthy, here are the suggested inclusions in the diet of pregnant women.

Eggs

Eggs are rich in protein, which has the amino acids necessary for the growth of your baby. This includes the growth of your baby’s brain and muscles. You may also want to prefer DHA eggs, which are naturally loaded with omega 3 fatty acid that further supports brain development. Just a word of advice, make sure that your eggs are thoroughly cooked to avoid salmonella poisoning. If you are not fond of eggs, other sources of protein are red meat, fish, and tofu.

Nuts

Do not be afraid of the fat found in nuts. Nuts are good sources of fiber, protein, and minerals, such as calcium, manganese, and magnesium. All of these will help in the development of the foetus. Therefore, instead of grabbing a slice of cake for snack, munch on a bowl of nuts instead, and better yet mix some dried fruits to it. Just be sure to not eat too many, as nuts have a lot of calories.

Dried Fruits

Speaking of dried fruits, did you know that this is a good source of iron? Your body needs iron to produce hemoglobin, a component of the blood that is responsible for carrying oxygen. When you are pregnant, you need more iron since you have to supply your baby with oxygen too and your baby also uses up iron in building his or her own blood supply.

Carrots

Rich in vitamin A, carrots are an important part of your diet, as it will help in the development of your child’s bones, eyes, and teeth. You can eat carrots as is, or transform them to delectable dishes and juices.

Avocados

Aside from fortified cereals, avocados are also a good source of folate, which is essential for the development of your baby’s brain and spinal cord. Most doctors prescribe a folic acid supplement to pregnant women at the early stages of pregnancy to prevent any birth defects on the child, but you can also get your daily requirement of folate from avocados and lentils, among others. In fact, you should start loading up on folic acid while you are still trying to conceive since birth defects often happen on the first month of the pregnancy.

Tips For A Great Pregnancy

By: Istvan Szalai

A rush of emotions. A little stick. Will it be pink! Or blue? Who should you tell first? What do you do now?

Pregnancy can be a wonderful experience that is full of excitement and love and anxiety and tension. There are a lot of decisions to be made and you must face the realization (whether it’s your first or your 12th) that life will never be the same.

Once you have the details of the actual delivery, the who (midwife or doctor), what (your baby), where (home birth, birthing clinic or hospital) and when (determining your due date) down, you can get on with making sure that baby has the best possible beginning even before you give birth.

Nutrition will be one of the keys to help you to keep your growing baby healthy and safe while still in your womb. And an extra bonus will be helping you to keep up your energy and minimizing the unpleasant effects of carrying your little one inside of you.

If you have a craving, indulge it. If you can’t eat something, don’t worry about it. The body has different needs during this time and those needs show themselves in various ways. It’s a temporary situation and nothing to be concerned about.

Prenatal Vitamins – While many multiple vitamins have the necessary quantities of vitamins and minerals for an average adult, prenatal vitamins have the increased quantities of those vitamins most important during this precious time. In addition, some prenatal vitamins have added the herb Ginger to help with morning sickness.

Calcium and Magnesium – These minerals are important during pregnancy for a number of reasons. If you don’t have enough calcium to provide to your baby as he begins to form bones and teeth, your body will naturally compensate by pulling these critical minerals from your own teeth and hair. This is why many women get more cavities and have brittle, dull hair during pregnancy. In addition, adequate levels of calcium may prevent preeclampsia during late pregnancy. Of course, there is the added benefit of avoiding excess leg or muscle cramps, common in pregnant women.

Red Raspberry – This herb is commonly known as the woman’s herb and can be taken throughout pregnancy. It has been used traditionally to strengthen the uterus and help women carry full-term reducing the chances of premature birth.

5-W – This is an herbal combination by Nature’s Sunshine Products. Many mothers and midwife’s insist they would not deliver without it. 5-W (five weeks) should be taken during the last five weeks before the scheduled due date. This product will help to tone the uterus and shorten the duration of labor.

Common ailments and natural alternatives

Sometimes our best efforts aren’t enough and we end up getting sick or having other problems that need to be addressed during this delicate time. Because anything that you take will also affect your growing baby, it’s best to use safe, natural alternatives whenever possible.

For almost all of the following, the best natural prevention is water. Pregnant women need far more of it than the average adult. Be sure you have water with you every where you go and drink it by the gallon.

Allergies and sinus congestion – Fenugreek may assist by acting as a mild laxative (opening the bowels to flush the irritants and mucus) and by reducing mucus secretions. A side benefit of fenugreek is that it promotes lactation in nursing women.

Back pain – See a good chiropractor and use rice pillows to ease the pain.

Bladder Infections – Use cranberry supplements daily as a preventative if you are prone to bladder infections. Should you contract a bladder infection during pregnancy, you could increase your dosage of cranberry and add colloidal silver, a natural antibiotic. Be sure to do this at the very first sign of the infection as bladder infections that reach the kidneys may increase the risk of preterm labor.

Colds – Echinacea is a safe alternative that can be used during pregnancy. Sip on Echinacea tea or take a few capsules several times a day. Another herb that may be effective is Olive Leaf. Of course, don’t forget to increase your vitamin C.

Constipation and hemorrhoids – This sometimes occurs due to the extra iron in prenatal vitamins. While it is generally not safe to take a laxative during pregnancy, there are some things you can do. Increase magnesium. Magnesium is a natural muscle relaxant and will help to relax the sphincter muscle that allows for proper elimination. Increase fiber. Often, due to cravings or specific food aversions during pregnancy, women don’t get enough fiber. Supplement if needed. Exercise may also help.

Insomnia – Valerian root acts as a natural sedative and may be just enough to help induce sleep.

Nausea – Ginger or peppermint tea can be very helpful here. Also try aloe vera juice.

Is Cellulite My Fault?

By Ben Aspland.

A question as old as cellulite itself. Many women, and some men, feel that their cellulite is a direct result of some action or in-action on their part but is this really the case? I will attempt to explain what cellulite is, how it occurs and in the process hopefully alleviate some of the guilt a few of you may be feeling. So what is cellulite? It is a change in the skin that occurs in most females and appears as dimpling or a ‘cottage cheese’ look in areas generally from the stomach down. The look of the skin is altered due to structural changes occurring under the surface, namely fat deposits collecting there. These fat deposits are contained within chambers and separated by collagen fibers underneath the skin.

These chambers increase in size for a number of reasons including: Genetics – There is an inherited likelihood of cellulite, Becoming overweight – Too much fat in each chamber, Age – The fibers shrink and tighten pulling the skin ‘downward’, Hormones (Oestrogen) – Stimulates the storage of fat for purposes such as menstruation, pregnancy and breastfeeding, Poor blood circulation – The fibers shrink due to lack of oxygen and the accumulation of waste products resulting in the tell-tale cellulite look, Poor lymph drainage – The waste products can not be drained from the area and increase the fat cells, Exercise – Or lack of, can be a cause as there is no increased blood flow to the areas, High fat foods – An increase in fat intake can cause the excess fat to be stored in the problem areas, Sun – Lengthy exposure to the sun accelerate the skin aging process, Dieting – On and off dieting causes the body to store fat in the problem areas in preparation for the next ‘starvation period’, and Stress – A highly stressful lifestyle causes the release of hormones which are associated with cellulite appearing.

How can I avoid cellulite? The short answer is, maybe you can’t. There are a number of things you can do to reduce the likelihood, the amount and the time at which cellulite will appear but for the vast majority of women, you will develop cellulite at some stage. Some of the things you can do to fend off its arrival are: Diet – Eat a proper, low calorie diet consisting of vegetables, fruits and lean meats. Avoid high fat, sugary and processed foods. Exercise – Have a regular exercise regime consisting of at least three sessions per week. Slip, Slop, Slap – Slip on a shirt, slop on sunscreen and slap on a hat when in the sun for long periods. Avoid stress – Easier to say than do but there are numerous calmative techniques that can be used or applied in most situations.

So is it my fault? Yes, er.. no. Well maybe. Now that you know what factors can cause the appearance of cellulite you are armed with the tools needed to make changes to your life to hopefully delay or possibly avoid its appearance. For some women, cellulite will appear regardless of a healthy lifestyle but continued diligence and adherence to that lifestyle may reduce the severity.

How to Treat Lower Back Pain

By Igor Stiler.

Treating lower back pain is one of the biggest dilemmas facing healthcare providers. The ailment has become so common that most people do not consider it an issue that needs immediate attention and refrain from getting proper treatment. As a result, many cases end up progressing to serious and complicated conditions. To treat lower back pain effectively, one must seek a timely help from a reputable pain management center.

Lower Back Pain – Determining the Causes

Lower back pain can be caused by a number of factors such as aging, overexertion, stress, strain, degenerative diseases, injury or even poor posture. Before a physician decides on the suitable back pain treatment for a particular patient, he will need to perform some preliminary tests including diagnostic scans such as X-ray, CT or MRI to determine the exact cause of pain.

Most multi-specialty pain management centers undertake a multidisciplinary treatment approach wherein a team of physicians specializing in various fields of medicine would effectively and quickly discuss the patient’s symptoms and treatment options with direct access to the necessary medications, tools and equipment.

Lower Back Pain Management – Treatment and Techniques

Lower back pain management treatment and techniques are oriented towards complete pain relief and full restoration of movement. In almost all cases, treatment for back pain begins with conservative, non-invasive treatment, and progress towards the invasive. These would include:

• Pain medication – prescription strength medication are commonly administered to treat musculoskeletal pain especially the back and neck

• Epidural steroid injections – the injections can help relieve neck, and back pain caused by inflamed spinal nerves.

• Heat and cold packs – they can be very effective in controlling pain and speeding up recovery from injuries or muscle and joint pain

• TENS or ultrasound therapy – the pain relieving modalities provide sensory level stimulation to the back, and help in masking or blocking pain as well as relaxing muscles

• Spinal decompression therapy – this session-based procedure minimizes pain in the lower back that may arise from damaged or degenerative disc syndromes

• Chiropractic care – this is a holistic, hands-on technique which applies a gentle pressure on the spine and affected joints to relieve pain. It stresses the inherent recuperative power of the body to heal itself without the use of drugs or surgery.

• Therapeutic massage – This involves stroking, pressing and kneading the muscles, tendons and ligaments to relieve pain, and to relax, stimulate and tone the body.

• Physical therapy – The focus is on regulated stretches and exercises to improve blood circulation and promote healing

Ensuring Successful Treatment

To ensure long lasting relief from pain, the patient would need to work together as a team with his physicians to treat lower back pain. The treatment for lower back pain may also involve regular home-based exercises, muscle development activities, lifestyle modification, learning the safest way to lift objects and maintaining a healthy body weight.