Tried & Tested
If you don’t mind the slightly steep price and some inconveniences, the Nayoya Acupressure Mat is a fine choice for immediate back pain relief. Note: It is definitely not acupuncture and it does not pretend to be one.
I bought just the padded mat from Amazon.com at about SGD80 (incl. shipping through Borderlinx) for my mom. I find the idea of having something similar to acupuncture for back pain relief while in the comfort of our home, rather attractive. She used it initially to relieve her back pain and fell asleep a few times. However after a couple of uses, my mom passed it back to me. Acupuncture is so accessible and affordable in Singapore, that I would think most people would still prefer a treatment by the physician.
If you do not want a rude shock, it is best to try it with a t-shirt first, before going full on with your bare skin (I had a rude shock when my brother accidentally stepped on my foot, while my foot was on the mat. I screamed) The plastic points could take some time to get used and your skin will burn with a sensation for about a minute. By lying there, your body heats itself up with a great amount of blood circulation. Ultimately, you would want to reach the point where you could lay with your bare skin to experience the full benefits. However I find this a little troublesome with the bare skin because I would need to use in it the privacy of my room – closing the door and drawing the curtains down.
I dreaded the getting up a little. After lying for a while, 6,210 points would have made a mark on your skin and when prying skin away from the mat, it naturally is going to hurt a little. If you don’t mind these little inconveniences, the acupressure mat is a fine choice for immediate back pain relief. However I stopped lately because after using it for a while, I felt some discomfort at my tailbone (coccyx). I probably return to re-review this again after a more conscious note of this issue.
Another Use Besides Back Pain Relief
I also tried standing on the acupressure mat while watching TV, or sometimes I would place my feet on it while seated. Since the mat helps with blood circulation, I treat this like a home foot reflexology (although nothing still beats the real thing) and my feet gets warmed up after a while. It is good for people like me with icy cold feet. Precaution: Using it with the feet than on the back is more painful, since feet has a smaller area and you are pressing down your whole weight on the mat.