By Ruben Castaneda | Staff Writer
Jan. 5, 2017, at 9:39 a.m.
On a scale of 1 to 10, lower back pain can register somewhere between "I need an aspirin" to “please jack me up with morphine.”
Research suggests the back brace can provide short-term relief.
Those suffering from such discomfort might feel moderate to mild pain that is not debilitating. In severe cases, they could feel like a giant electrified claw has claimed the lower part of their back, tearing into each nerve in that part of the body. The smallest of movements – getting up from a chair, walking or even coughing – can feel torturous. Maybe the lower back is as stiff as hardened concrete and as sensitive as an exposed nerve.
A simple lumbar support device, or back brace, can provide short-term relief, research shows, according to an analysis of 28 studies published in the September 2016 issue of the Annals of Physical Rehabilitation Medicine journal. While these devices won’t cure the underlying condition, they're simple and relatively inexpensive. In the 2016 meta-analysis, researchers concluded that lumbar support devices are useful for improving function and reducing pain among those suffering from subacute back pain, which means it's past the acute stage – which is sudden and short in duration – but not long-lasting enough to be chronic.