VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - One of the most common reasons people visit the doctor is back pain. But right now, many people might not be able to afford a trip to the chiropractor.
Virginia Beach resident John Kuchta used to drive a lot for his job, sitting in his car for hours a day. That started causing problems.
“That takes a toll on your hips, back and certainly your waistline," he said.
He’s been getting chiropractic adjustments for more than a decade to relieve the tightness and pain.
“Some numbness and tingling in my right arm certainly mobility decreases, you sort of start getting pain all over the place in your hips.”
And John can now only be seen if it's an emergency because of the COVID-19 restrictions.
John is lucky because he still has a job and health insurance, but as the unemployment rate is nearing 23%, many people don't have job or insurance. However, there are some things you can do if you have back or neck pain and you can’t go to the doctor.
Dr. Jean Paul Amonte of Amonte Chiropratic in Virginia Beach says there are many things you can do at home to relieve back pain and pressure.
“First and most simplest, it's heating pads, using a hot shower on any tight areas for 10-15 minutes - you're going to increase the blood flow, relaxing the muscles and really working out the tender spots you can bring a lot of relief," Dr. Amonte explained.
He says you can work out those tender spot with a tennis ball, a handheld massager or with your fingers.
Another remedy Dr. Amonte says is very effective is Epsom salt.
“Epsom salt is packed with magnesium, and so you can soak in a tub for 20-30 minutes and get the water hot but still comfortable," he said.
“If your pain seems to be connected to a recurrent posture or current movement, the opposite or opposing stretch that you are in will counteract much of that position-related pain.”
If you don’t have a stability ball at home, you can lean back over the arm of your couch.
“By putting the body in these different positions, you’re essentially decompressing the spine.”
And if you have severe pain anywhere or significant weakness or numbness, seek emergency care from your doctor.
For more helpful DIY tips to alleviate back and neck pain, visit Dr. Amonte's Facebook page.