How Can You Address Upper Back Pain

Health & Medical Blog

A lot of the advice out there for treating back pain is pretty general. And if anything, it seems to focus on lower back pain because that tends to be the most common and the most severe. However, if your back pain is concentrated in your upper back, a lot of the targeted lower back stretches — and recommendations like sleeping with a pillow between your legs — won't do much for it. Here are some better ways to address upper back pain, specifically.

1. Wear a shoulders-back brace.

At most pharmacies, you can find braces, which really look like a set of straps, which you can place over your upper body to keep your shoulders back throughout the day. They are elastic, so they do not lock your shoulders into place, but they do exert some pressure on your shoulders to encourage you to keep them back. A lot of upper back pain is caused or made worse by slouching forward, and wearing this type of brace can help, especially if you are someone who sits at a desk for much of the day.

2. Raise your computer monitor.

Are you looking down to see your computer screen? If so, you are hanging your neck and head forward, which puts a constant strain on your upper back. Either raise your computer monitor or lower your chair a little so that you are looking straight ahead throughout the day. This one change can greatly alleviate your upper back pain by addressing your posture.

3. Sleep with a flatter pillow.

When people develop upper back pain, they often assume it's because they don't have enough padding under their head and neck at night. But actually, putting more padding under your head and neck tends to make things worse since it increases the angle between your neck and back. What you actually need is a thinner pillow. You want one that is firm and does not squish down too much under your head, but that isn't more than a few inches thick. Memory foam tends to be a good choice since it molds to offer support to your head without adding too much bulk. A few nights of sleeping on a flat, yet supportive pillow should really help your upper back pain.

Upper back pain can be tough to address, but the measures above should help. You can and should contact back pain treatment services to learn more about chiropractic or massage options.


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