seriously cool methods Erin. I'm going to give your YingYangThang a lash and see how i go. How are you all over here anyway, everyone seems to be getting a bit of a rough ride at the mo. No rest for the Wicked Eh?
Personally, I find a hot bath and/or heating pad especially useful. In fact, I take a hot bath everynight and sleep with a heating pad. But then, I don't have any obvious swelling. If I did, as Erin suggested, ice might work well. I'm afraid ice would make me too cold, though, and aggravate my raynaud's.
Hope your back feels better soon,