Chronic back pain is nothing to take lightly. If you're struggling with chronic lower back pain, you might find yourself looking for options beyond the standard over-the-counter medications. Luckily, there are a number of different options for managing the pain that don't require you to take any medication. Here's a look at a few treatments you should consider for drug-free pain management.

Strength Building – Some pain management specialists and therapists recommend the use of strength training to help build muscle tone and improve motion and flexibility. In some cases, strengthening those muscles increases the support in your lower back, reducing your pain. This type of treatment usually includes things like aerobics, weight training, aquatic therapy and daily stretching routines.

Chiropractic Treatment – Chiropractic care usually includes manual adjustments that can help to improve alignment in your lower back and other areas. You may find that you need to visit the chiropractor multiple times to help maintain the results of the treatment. Particularly if you're dealing with a chronic condition, routine visits are often beneficial.

Heat and Ice – Heat pads, sports rubs and ice packs often help to relax tense muscles and ease inflammation. If you have a deep muscle-tissue injury or problem, you'll likely find that applying ice helps to soothe inflammation. Once the inflammation settles out, you can apply heat to soothe pain.

Electrotherapy – TENS therapy, also called Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation, uses electrical stimulation to engage nerve endings in the affected area. This typically helps to distract nerves and pain receptors from the pain signals received by the injury.

Surgery – Although surgery is usually the last option for someone with most types of back problems, you may find your doctor recommending surgical repair in some cases. Depending on the type of injury you've suffered, you may undergo a fusion surgery where portions of your spine will be fused together. In other cases, you may have metal plates or pins put in to replace a damaged disc or bone. Just make sure you talk it through in detail, because recovery from back surgery can be difficult.

As you can see, chronic back pain isn't without its options for treatment. With the help of a chiropractor like those at Gerleman Chiropractic Office or another pain management specialist, you may be able to deal with the discomfort without having to take prescription medications for pain. If you're looking to delay or avoid pain medication, talk with your care team about these options and any others that may work for you.