Firstly don't panic! Even just a simple muscle spasm can be incredibly painful and quite worrying due to the level of pain.
Acute strain sprain injuries that are majority joint related generally respond better to a cold compress. Ice packs (bag of frozen peas etc) slow blood flow and in turn reduce inflammation, swelling and pain.
Heat does the opposite (increases blood flow) and is good for muscle spasms, and chronic joint pains such as arthritis, using a hot water bottle or wheat bag.
Both should feel comfortable, not painful, if this is the case the packs are either too hot/cold, and a thicker barrier should be used i.e. towel, until the temperature is comfortable but can still be felt.
NB: Do not use if you suffer from diabetes or poor circulation.
Once you are more comfortable and able to move again try gently moving little and often. Don’t try to 'push through the pain' if it hurts or gets worse STOP.
Rest as comfortable as possible, in a supportive comfortable chair, with cushions if needed, whilst using your hot/cold compress. DO NOT SLUMP INTO YOUR CHAIR! If you are having a back spasm, you may find it comfortable to lie on your back with your knees slightly elevated with a pillow underneath your knees. Avoid using the floor to lie on as you may struggle to get up again, maybe use a sofa or bed.
Your GP or pharmacist will be able to prescribe pain relief medication. If your pain persists past 48 hours specialist treatment such as chiropractic or physiotherapy is advised to establish the root cause of your problem and administer the right treatment to get you back on the road to recovery.
The first, and only, clinic in Wales to be awarded both of the prestigious Royal College of Chiropractors Quality Marks
Located upstairs above the Snowdrop Mobility Shop, our clinic entrance is on Church Road.
The Whitchurch Clinic
2 Merthyr Road
Tel: (029) 20617700