Back Pain
Natural Remedies

Back Pain - Editor's Choice

Over the years, Earth Clinic readers have sent us many reports about their treatments for Back Pain. The editors at Earth Clinic consider the below posts to be some of the most helpful and informative and have named them 'Editor's Choice'. We hope that you will find this useful.

Coconut Oil

Posted by Shelly (Virginia) on 12/12/2021
5 out of 5 stars

This is my go to site for all things natural cures. It's an awesome site. Was having lower back pain for a week now. Even took my heating pad to work and used it almost all day. Definitely helped, but the pain kept lingering. So I came to good ole EC for help. I rubbed my back with coconut oil and OMG, my pain was gone! I am dumbfounded!! I thought that people were just saying that. How could that be true? But trust me, it's so true. Thank you EC for all your wisdom.

Sit Ups

Posted by Gordon (Auckland) on 11/07/2017
5 out of 5 stars

Being a back pain sufferer for many years up to the age of 50 years old, it was always there. I then decided to ad strength to my core muscles as the anti inflams were useless and destroying any healthy tissues I had. At the age of 72 and many many Golf games, lifting, moving Houses etc etc. no BACK PAIN, after my stomach exercises for the last 22 years no back pain there is no easy answer, look for abs over 40 on the Internet, get on you back and start slow.

I do 200 - 400 sit ups every day and this has kept my back pain away for 22 years. I actually have a waist .. Do not look for sudden Abs and say this does not work .. what you are after is the "Strong Core " start slow do one and work up to 2 then 3 then 10 each and then another 10 then another. Doing these exercises is better than any back pain ... I know.

MSM and Vitamin C

Posted by Tricia (Colorado) on 07/05/2016
5 out of 5 stars

I have a long history with back problems and multiple traumas to my body. I have been through two cervical fusions (3 levels fused) and an arm surgery (where they removed bone, and gave me hardware of plates and screws in my arm). I have recovered from all my surgeries but had been dealing with the residual side effects of chronic pain and many years of being on pharmaceuticals. Today, I am clean, as far as pharmaceuticals goes, none of that crap in my blood stream. It has been a four year journey since my first neck surgery. I was on ten different medications. I started by juicing and eating clean, I slowly worked my way off ten different medications. Then in the 6 months I stopped an anti-depressant (amitriptyline, not sure I spelled it right) which I was on for 20 years for chronic pain. I felt horrible after coming of that med, had worked through most the issues, but man was I in pain every day. Everyday was a battle to feel better, which usually took me most the day.

Anyway, my journey with MSM started like a lot of people... I took it and didn't notice much. I often would forget my second dose. Then one day I just started remember to take it, not only that, I even started taking it three times a day, 6 grams total divide into three doses. Those doses were followed with 5,000 mg of Vitamin C. I kid you not, two days after starting this routine, I woke up with ZERO pain. I was dumbfounded to say the least and honestly it has been an adjustment in my brain to not have chronic pain everyday. It has been amazing and I will tell anyone about it.

If you are not having results using MSM for back pain, look at your dosage, larger is not always better. Also I didn't notice the results from MSM until I started chasing it down with Vitamin C. After reading up more on MSM it seems that it works synergistically with Vitamin C.

I just started my BF on this, as he has a lung dysfunction. Vitamin C has done wonders for him.

I am amazed that I have no pain, I had only know about MSM earlier, maybe I could have avoided some of my interactions with the medical field.

Leg Lifts

Posted by Anita (Corpus Christi, Tx) on 05/23/2016 3 posts
5 out of 5 stars

I have been reading on Earth Clinic and recommending the site to others for years, and I have tried almost all of the cures for back pain. Most suggestions helped temporarily, and I do think there is value in the remedies I tried, but I have found something that helps me long-term: leg lifts.

I am a 45 year old woman, and I want to help you because I know the pain and frustration you are experiencing. There were times I could not get off the floor because of the pain.

I got shoved to the floor at a rock concert when I was 17 and have had lower back pain in increasing intensity since. When I was 30, my hip would fall out of its socket, and starting about age 33, I would regularly trip on sidewalk cracks, which would send a shooting pain through my back. I remained active through it all, even running a 5K, but the pain kept coming back.

I went to 4 different chiropractors for 6 months at a time, and they helped, but it was prohibitively expensive and, of course, temporary. One chiropractor told me that I had advanced stage arthritis in my lumbar vertebrae and that I would have to get treatment for the rest of my life or my spine would fuse completely. I didn't believe this was my fate.

I was in a bad car accident when I was 35. I was rear-ended while I was at a stop sign and the result was horrendous whip-lash. I couldn't even stand up without passing out. Back to the chiropractor I went. The first adjustment helped me to start functioning again. I recognized a pattern at this chiropractor. He had a tool that was hooked up to a computer and he would run it along my spine. I asked him about it. He said that it measured how much my muscles were pulling by how much heat they put out. If the muscles were pulling equally on both sides (and the computer would show a green color), then he reasoned the adjustments he did to my spine were "taking". If one of the muscles attached to a vertebrae were pulling harder on one side, it meant that muscle was working harder, so the computer would show a yellow(moderate pulling) or red (pulling hard) color and he reasoned that the adjustments weren't "taking".

What he didn't know was that I was conducting my own experiment. I would go to the gym and lift weights for a week before he ran his test, and the colors on the computer would be green (muscles pulling evenly). Then I would not lift weights for a couple weeks and when he ran his test the results would be a mess of yellow and red. And the pain would come back.

I knew the chiropractor could put my vertebrae back where they belonged, but I wanted to figure out what was making the vertebrae get out of place.

I truly believe that if we use our muscles, it will even out our spines.

My husbands spine was a giant "S" from carrying a ladder at work every day. He stopped carrying the ladder and lifted weights intensely for 6 months. His next x-ray showed that his spine was perfectly straight!

I also figured out that my right leg was lower than my left leg (after much research on Earth Clinic) due to my hips being misaligned. My hips were tilted forward and down, more so on my right side. This is why I kept tripping over sidewalk cracks with my right foot. So I started researching hip exercises and found some videos on the internet. I did the exercises and realigned my hips! I did these leg lifts every day at first, and now I only do them about twice a week to keep my hips in line. I have no more lower back pain, and if I feel it coming on, I do the leg lifts and it goes away!

This is the main pain reliever: Lay on the floor (or in bed if you have to) on your side. Don't prop yourself on your elbow, just lay on the floor. Your legs should be stacked (you can bend the bottom leg for stability). Now lift your top leg about 18 inches. While the top leg is elevated, at the peak of the lift, twist it so your toes point toward the sky. Hold this for a count of 3. Then twist it back so your toes point forward again. And then lower your leg back down to stack on the bottom leg. Super easy. Lift, twist, hold, untwist, lower. Do this about 20 times, or as many as is comfortable. You will feel the muscle at your hip get a little cranky. That means it's getting stronger. Roll over and do the same on the other side with the other leg.

I also do similar exercises called "clam shells" Where you lay on your side with both knees bent and lift your top knee about 10 inches while keeping your feet together. Put your hand on your hip to make sure your hip is not moving while you lift your knee. You will feel this toward the back of your hip joint in your gluteus. Do about 25 of these or as many as you can. These muscles will get strong quickly!

We don't use these muscles in day-to-day living, not even running. I believe that when these hip rotator muscles atrophy, our hips become misaligned and it pinches the lumbar vertebrae. Before I started doing these exercises, I had horrible pain, and it receded after the first set. After about 4 days of doing these leg lifts 3 times a day, the pain was gone!

There are a lot of videos on the internet that show exercises for realigning your hips, just search "hips" on the video site. The ones I found to be most effective are by physical therapists who do the exercises themselves to show you how.

I also keep my upper back pain free by lifting free weights at home during TV commercials. I don't lift heavy weights, rarely over 5 lbs. I think the key is to keep using muscles evenly, especially if you have a job where you have to use your dominant arm to lift or repeat movements.

I hope this saves someone a lot of pain and hassle. Don't give up. Do what you can, and especially just keep moving!

God bless you all.


Heel Lifts

Posted by Holly (Portland, Or) on 04/05/2011
5 out of 5 stars

Heel Lifts for Back Pain:

For myself... I've had back problems ever since puberty and been through chiropractors, PT, Orthopedists, etc... And only did my recent chiropractor find I had a 3 MM!!! Difference in one leg. One very rarely correlated problem is for those who are HYPER FLEXIBLE, a very small leg-length difference can cause debilitating pain. I would get up in the morning and every breath I took would send shooting pains through my back and side. At any given time you could feel a knot that felt like bone, the size of a golf ball in my low back. Within 8 hours of using heel lifts, I noticed the pain all but disappeared. Now for the remaining VERY minor discomfort that sometimes I comes I stay exercised - focus on core strength.

Ball Point Pen Technique

Posted by Redou (New Orleans, Louisiana) on 06/16/2009
5 out of 5 stars

I'm not a doctor, THIS IS NOT MEDICAL ADVICE, I'm only telling you what happened to me. Consult you doctor before you try anything. If you get hurt, don't waste your time suing me, you won't get much.

This post will probably be too long for most readers, but if you have LOWER BACK PAIN, I want you to know that I understand what you're going through.

I fixed my LOWER BACK PAIN with a BALL POINT PEN - no, I didn't write a check. First some background and then I'll get to the point. I had back pain for 28 years - from age 17 to age 45. I'm 53 now and except for a couple of 'twinges' NO PAIN IN 8 YEARS. I spent an average of 3 days a month on my back. I had pain 75% of the time. I used to pee in a jar because it hurt too bad to get up and go to the bathroom.

My wife had to put on my shoes and tie them for me. To pick up something, I had to get down, slowly, on my knees and only if it wasn't heavy. I used to pay $80 for a hotel room just to get out of the car. I never slept in the hotel bed. I slept on the hard floor.

I couldn't do a lot of things like camping or hiking or dancing. I thought of myself as a cripple. I lived in fear of that pain, like a knife in my lower back, making me go to the ground. I never knew when it was going to hit.

I went to doctors and chiropractors and spent a lot of money. Had a lot of X-Rays done. I'll probably die of cancer. I was told that: - one leg was longer than the other (chiropractor) - I needed special shoes or lifts in my shoes (chiropractor) - I had a herniated disc (doctor) - I had soft tissue damage (doctor) - I had cracked vertebrae (doctor) - I needed surgery (at least 3 doctors)

I tried:

- heating pads (temporary relief)
- popping my own back (sometimes temporary relief, sometimes made it worse)
- bed rest - or on the floor rest (sometimes back to work the next day, sometimes 3 days to a week on my back)
- stretching exercizes prescribed by doctors (useless)
- very hot baths (temporary relief often followed by worse pain)
- TENS unit - electric stimulation - I bought one (temporary relief)
- heat, TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation)followed with 'manupulation' (back popping) by chiropractors (temporary relief, usually followed by pain shortly thereafter or the next day
- hard mattresses, soft mattresses, hard chairs, soft chairs (hard chairs worked better for me)

I never ate any pills except over-the-counter muscle relaxors. I won't eat a pain pill. Too easy to get addicted.

Ok. I'm getting to the point:

One day I'm lying on the floor, missing work. My girlfriend is looking at the computer and trying to help me. She is reading about a home remedy for back pain. I'm telling her don't waste yourtime, go in the bedroom, there's a stack of books in there about back pain. Some by a girl named Zimmerman, if memory serves. I think it was a British physical therapist that told me about this cure, but with the pain, and not thinking clearly I really can't remember. Whoever it was, they have my eternal gratitude.

What the person on the net was recommending:

- wait until your pain gets better, don't start fixing it while you're having a lower back pain episode.
- Once your back gets back to 'normal' (for me that meant I was able to work around the pain, go to work, go somewhere)- Then
get a ball point pen.
- Drop your drawers, bend over until you just start to feel scared. (most back sufferers don't like to bend over, that's often when the pain hits you)
- Place your fingers on your thighs, flat in the front, and make a mark with the pen where your middle finger touches your thighs one mark on each leg. Don't bend below where you feel comfortable (meaning don't go below the mark)
- DON'T Wash the marks off.
- Don't do it all at once, ten here, twenty there, and only if you feel safe doing it.
- After a week , if you feel comfortable with it, make a mark 1/2 inch (THAT'S ONE HALF OF AN INCH) below the first marks and now
spend a week touching those new marks 100 times a day.
- You can see where this is going - All the way down to your toes.
- I took three months to do it.
- If you do it at 1/2 inch at a time it will probably take you a year, (I think the person who invented this was being overly cautious and trying to make sure no one got hurt)

Anyway, after 3 months of touching the slowly descending marks 100 times a day, I could touch my toes. Without fear. (But I would kind of work my way down each day) I had not bent over and touched my toes for 28 years. Now I could do it every day. And I still do it now. The lower back pain was (and is) GONE.

1) My theory - the reason this works - is that I had babied my back for years and the right muscles, the ones that are supposed to hold you up and aid in flexing and extending a person's back - were WEAK. I realized that all the treatments I had tried only treated the SYMPTOMS and did not solve the PROBLEM - my WEAK back. Also, I was able to function for many years with a bad back, but I believe I was using the WRONG MUSCLES. When my back was locked up, my spine was crooked, the wrong muscles were trying to do a job they were not intended for. Also, and this is important, I don't believe I had any real DAMAGE to my back, nothing broken or torn, that is why I think anyone who wants to try this should go to their doctor and make sure nothing is broken first.

I still touch my toes 100 times a day, twenty here, ten there. I keep a concrete block outside my back door and every now and then I bend down and lift it WITH MY BACK, not with my knees like the doctors say. DON'T TRY THIS YOURSELF. Now my back is strong, my muscles are flexible, and circulation in that area is good. Weak muscles are TENSE and have poor circulation. STRONG muscles are flexible and have good circulation.

Another thing I believe is that many back sufferers are stressed out people, their stress shows up in muscle tension. I don't think that is the only reason for back problems, but I believe stress is a major contributor.



Posted by Wes (Woodstock Ont., Ontario Can.) on 09/22/2008
5 out of 5 stars

I have had 5 degenerative discs in my lower back for about 5 years. The Drs say go home and live with it Surgery is to dangerious. I have been taking corizone injections every three months, but they only last a short while.

My brother-in -law told me about DMSO and he had some on hand. I tried it by putting some on a peace of gauze and appling it to my lower back. I then covered it with saran wrap. After 24 hours the pain was gone and i did this twice a day for 4 days. Since then i only use it when i feel my back starting to hurt. This pain was also causing my right testicle to swell and was very painful. Since using DMSO, I now have relief again and the testicle has gone back to normal.

By the way I'm 79 years old.

Thankful for DMSO and my brother-in -law for telling me about it.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Posted by Mimmer (London, England) on 06/04/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Hi all, I was chatting with a lady at work who suggested Blackstrap Molasses (BSM) and Apple Cider Vinegar. For a year I have suffered with constipation, bad back and general tighness of muscles in the neck area. For 20 yrs I have had trouble with fibroids (had surgery but too multiple to remove all). On 26-5-07, I bought BSM and ACV. I took it right away, doses-2 large spoons of BSM in warm water, followed by 3 tablespoons of ACV in warm water. I done this morning b4 breakfast and last thing at night. The second day on it I had a very easy bowel movement and have done everyday since. My constipation is now a thing of the past. My back (which I had to get medication from the doctors for-didnt help) was cured during the week, along with the muscle ache. I sleep deeper and dont seem to eat as much. I totally know that this 'tonic' as I like to call it will clear my fibriods eventually. I also want to see after 3months how i do as I want to give it to my Auntie for her Arthritis. I thank you all for posting your experiences as this has given me constant strength and encouragement. I look forward to this journey and please if you are having or have had VICTORY over fibriods with 'The Tonic' then please post so I can read it. I am a big beliver in foods for healing and this sure is a testament to God's produce. Smiles

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by Susan (Tampa, FL) on 01/03/2007
5 out of 5 stars

2 tsp honey, 2 tsp apple cider vinegar in 8 to 16 ounces of water 3 times a day cured my arthritis, back pain and allergies. I was in so much pain for many many years with severe back problems, and then 2 years ago was diagnosed with rheumatoid and osteoarthritis. The dr. prescribed steroids, and 2 different immuno suppressant drugs and the side effects were horrible. I could hardly get out of bed in the morning, my joints and muscles hurt so bad, i also have fibromyalgia. I started this regimen about a month ago and saw immediate results. My hay fever has cleared up also. My sinuses are dry, usually I always have a bad post nasal drip problem. I feel more energized, and my body just feels good, like it is getting what it needs.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Posted by George (Fairfield, CA) on 10/21/2005
5 out of 5 stars

I have a back problem and it got even worse when an employee that I work with pushed me from behind and I found myself on the floor in pain. Good thing there was nothing broken but it left me with a terrible back pain. I could hardly walk and if I do, it would be like a slow motion picture. I was downing anti-inflammatory 3x a day, but the doctor only recommends 2x a day. I really don't care at that time. I was also taking tylenol around 12 tabs a day plus a muscle relaxant. None of it work or if it did, it would only provide very little relief which is close to nothing. Then a friend of mine mentioned ACV and I remembered my mom telling me about that about 2 and a half decades ago. I went to the internet and found this site. I thought I would give it a try. Nothing to lose on my part, but everything to gain. The first couple of days of taking ACV, it really didn't do anything for me. But on the third day, I felt a tremendous change. My pain was almost gone. I want to mention that on the second day, I didn't stick to the 3x a day regimen for ACV. I think I drank ACV at least 7 times (3 tablespoons each dose) for the second day. When I felt my pain was almost gone, I went back to my 3 times a day. And up to now, I am still taking ACV. And I am only taking half a pill of my medication for the whole day. This miracle happen in a span of 3 days. It was like a birthday present to me because the third day was my actual birthday and I was able to entertain friends that came over. ACV is a true natural miracle. Thanks to ACV I once again have my life back. Thanks to my mom also for just being mom.