First of all, avoid heat. Everyone rushes to put a heating pac on painful spots, but this is not the right time for heat. Anytime your pain has increased significantly, it's time for ice. I know it doesn't feel as good as heat does, but it does more for the pain and inflammation. Heat increases blood flow, which increases inflammation. Ice decreases blood flow, which decreases inflammation, which decreases pain.
If you would like more information on this topic, look up my older blog on ice vs heat.
Now that you have ice on the painful area, you must let it get cold enough to go numb in order to be affective. ALWAYS have a layer between you and the ice, whether it be a paper towel, T-shirt, etc.
Next, gentle stretching, if possible will help relax the muscles involved. If it's the low back, lying on your back, with an ice pac under you and bringing you knees up to your chest (as far as you can comfortably) and holding to a count of 10.
If it's your neck, lying on your back with ice pac under you with a rolled up towel to support your cervical curve. Clasping your hands together and placing them behind your head, gently lift your head towards your chest.
Ice and stretching can do wonders until you can get in to see your Chiropractor. This combination will help stop the inflammation, calm down the muscle spasms and actually begin the healing process quicker.
I am always available for questions and offer a free consultation to everyone.