When I was 21 I wrecked on my mountain bike pretty bad. tweaked my back and compressed the disk. back pain is THE WORST! I ended up doing physical therapy twice a week for 3 months. The best thing I did (and still do occasionally) is ice and stimulation. I LOVED it when they hooked up the electrodes to my back and laid the ice packs on there. Unfortunately... that injured, even though I have healed from it for the most part, cost me my job in the firefighting field (with the help of a bad economy of course).
Best I can tell you is do some back strengthening exercises and dont do anything crazy on it for a while. I am also about to get an inversion table to help on my bad days.