There is nothing quite like back pain, and anyone who has experienced will know just how debilitating and damaging it can be. Those who suffer with back pain will find that their every movement is affected and that even sitting or lying still hurts. While any chronic pain is of course distressing, the fact that all our nerves run through our spine means that any damage to this area will affect every single movement and position.
As such it is highly important that we manage this pain and finding a treatment that works for you can be a huge comfort and relief. Ice massage might be able to achieve just that – so what is it? And how do you use it to combat back pain?
What Is Ice Massage?
Ice massage is exactly what it sounds like – a form of massage utilizing ice in order to achieve more pronounced effects. This works for several reasons, but in short ice will not only help to reduce swelling, but can also increase blood flow to the area and help to numb the pain.
Meanwhile the massage itself can help to release tension in the muscles, to remove knots and to further aid in a healthy circulation and the reduction of swelling.
How to Use Ice Massage
To have a go at ice massage you will first of course need a piece of ice or something else cold. Make sure that you keep something between your skin and the ice however or it will be uncomfortable and you may cause nerve damage. Some suggestions are to try using some ice in a Styrofoam cup, or to try wrapping a block of ice in a flannel or small towel.
To perform an ice massage yourself you can simply lie on one side and rub the ice around your back (this is easiest for lower back pain), but you will find the process is more effective if you have a sympathetic friend or partner who is willing to provide the massage for you while you lie on your front.
For best effects use a circular motion with the ice and avoid applying the ice directly to the areas where bone protrudes from the spine. Keep the massage quite focused staying in the region that hurts the most. Make sure not to perform the ice massage for more than 5-10 minutes to avoid ice burn and nerve damage, and if you want to prolong the experience try alternating between ice massage and ‘regular’ massage.