Managing Back Pain

Mom holding box and smiling at her daughter

Whether you’re a physician or healthcare provider, one of your main goals is to come up with the best and most comprehensive treatment and pain management options for your patient. Adults with chronic pain, like back pain, see several other areas of their life decline because of their inability to move around comfortably. Having lower back pain inhibits patient quality of life ranging from spikes in mental health issues, to the decline of their social lives, and their inability to exercise comfortably. Below we touch on several back pain treatment and management options to discuss with your patients.

Exploring treatment options for back pain

  • How is back pain treated?

    Two young men in a plank position outdoors

    Types of Back Pain Medication

    There are several types of medications you might recommend to a patient for back pain treatment and management. Here are a few common medications used to treat back pain:

    • OTC pain relievers: NSAIDs such as naproxen or ibuprofen are common pain-relieving drugs that can help patients manage their back pain. Advil Dual Action Back Pain is an FDA-approved over-the-counter pain reliever that contains a combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen for 8 hours of back pain relief. If over-the-counter doses don’t work for the patient, you might consider prescription strength options.
    • Topical pain relievers: Ointments and creams that provide a heating and cooling sensation can provide relief through the skin. Consider recommending topical treatments that you believe can appropriately target a patient’s symptoms. Explore NEW Advil Targeted Relief Cream—a fast, powerful, pain-relieving topical cream that starts working on contact for up to 8 hours of relief.
    • Narcotics: While narcotics may not work best for chronic pain, this is certainly a treatment option for patients with severe pain. Explore non-opioid treatments for pain relief.
    • Antidepressants: Studies have shown that certain antidepressants such as duloxetine and tricyclic antidepressants have been proven to relieve chronic pain in addition to symptoms of depression.

    Alternative Options to Treat and Manage Back Pain

    Physical therapy and alternative treatments have also proven effective for managing acute and chronic back pain. Therapists can teach patients exercises that help with flexibility, strengthening back muscles, and more. Practicing these recommendations can help build stamina and keep back pain at bay. Let’s explore other types of alternative treatments.1

    • Surgery: Surgery should only be considered when a patient describes unrelenting radiating leg pain and muscle weakness due to nerve compression. Additional structural problems can be addressed through surgery.
    • Visiting a chiropractor: A chiropractor can help manipulate the spine and offer back pain relief for patients who need adjustments.
    • Yoga and Mindfulness: Practicing mindfulness and deep stretching in yoga can not only help build muscle strength, but it can also provide relaxation techniques to help with back pain management.
    • Acupuncture: Encouraging patients to visit an acupuncturist may provide localized help for back pain. Using thin sterilized needles, acupuncturists target specific areas and connected channels of pain. Acupuncture can also help with stress and anxiety.
    • Massage: Overworked muscles can also benefit from deep tissue massages and localized treatment to help manage back pain.

    While this list is certainly not exhaustive of all forms of back pain relief, these are some of the most common physicians might consider when offering options to help manage chronic and acute back pain. Treatment will vary in every situation based on each patient’s unique needs.

How can Laura and Rachel manage their back pain?

Mom in pool with baby and toddler


Laura, 32, is an active mother who loves to take her children swimming. Recently, she hurt her back and cannot do as much with her family as she used to. Laura is having difficult bending, twisting, and reaching, which makes caring for two young children even more challenging than ever. Laura needs a solution that offers powerful and rapid relief for back pain, and that is generally well tolerated. She explains, “I want my back pain to go away, so I can get back to taking care of my family!”


  • Advil Dual Action Back Pain for targeted relief with 2 analgesics that starts working in minutes so Laura can get relief fast
  • Advil Targeted Relief Cream for topical relief at the site of Laura’s pain that lasts up to 8 hours
  • Physical therapy to help strengthen Laura’s back for her active lifestyle
Woman working in a grocery store


Rachel, 48, works as a shop assistant in an organic fresh food market. She spends most of her working day on her feet and has recently been experiencing aches and twinges in her back. Rachel can’t afford to take time off work, but it’s also hard to work through the pain. Rachel needs a solution that offers effective pain relief and fast recovery from back pain. “I’m on my feet a lot, so I need a treatment that can help me stay that way,” she describes.


  • Advil Dual Action Back Pain for a combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen that provides 8 hours of back pain relief—helping Rachel get through her long shifts at work

Explore related content


What causes back pain?

Learn more about the common causes of back pain.

Find out more

Listen to Pain campaign

Listen To Pain

Explore our tools like the Patient Pain Tracker, designed to help improve patient conversations.

Discover now

Signs & symptoms

What are the signs of back pain?

Learn more about the common signs and symptoms of back pain.

Find out more

Advil Dual Action Back Pain packaging

Advil Dual Action Back Pain

Explore Advil Dual Action Back Pain, an FDA-approved combination of acetaminophen and ibuprofen that provides 8 hours of back pain relief.

Find out more

Advil Targeted Relief packaging

NEW Advil Targeted Relief

Learn more about the first topical pain reliever from Advil that starts working on contact for up to 8 hours of relief.

Find out more

Advil Dual Action packaging

Advil Dual Action

Explore Advil Dual Action, an effective combination of ibuprofen and acetaminophen that fights pain in 2 ways.

Find out more