Acute Backache

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Backache is a common, painful condition that affects many of us in our lifetimes. Read on for more information regarding your condition and the treatment options available to you...

What are the symptoms of backache?

Backache is characterised by a dull aching sensation in the back, and sometimes causes the inability to stand up straight without pain, a decreased range of motion and diminished ability to flex the back.

The symptoms of back pain, if due to strain or misuse, are usually short-lived but can last for days or weeks. Back pain is chronic when symptoms have been present for longer than three months.

Should I seek medical advice?

At Mayberry Pharmacy, we provide a number of different pain management solutions as well as expert self-care advice through our free telephone consultation service.


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) tablets, such as ibuprofen, can help relieve back pain. However NSAIDs are not suitable for everyone, so it is important to speak to a pharmacist if you’re unsure. If you cannot take NSAIDs, you may be advised to take an alternative medicine such as codeine. Codeine is a stronger painkiller for short-term use as it can be addictive if used long-term. Following a consultation with a pharmacist from Mayberry Pharmacy, you will be advised on the treatment methods most suitable to you.

Hot and Cold Packs

Some people find that heat (such as a hot bath or a hot water bottle placed on the affected area) helps to ease the pain when back pain first starts.

Cold (such as an ice pack or a bag of frozen vegetables) placed on the painful area can also help in the short term.

Another option is to alternate between hot and cold using ice packs and a hot water bottle. We have a range of hot and cold compression packs available in our pharmacies, book a consultation to find out more.

Next steps…

If you’re worried about your symptoms, please don’t hesitate to get in touch by booking a free telephone consultation with one of our experienced pharmacists.

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