Lower back pain is very common and can result from strain, injury, or infection. It can lead to various other issues, which is why it is essential to find the cause and get treatment. Usually, people avoid seeing a doctor, but it is vital to get the checkup done so that you can find the cause and get treatment accordingly. The pain usually gets better with physical therapy, medication, and rest, but taking precautions and making a few lifestyle changes is still essential.
How common is lower back pain?
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Around four out of five people can get lower back pain at some point in their life. It is one of the most common issues that can occur to people. There are some risk factors for back pain that include:
People over the age of 30 are more prone to get back pain, which can also wear away with age. The discs can cause issues, but as you age, the discs tend to get weak and wear down, which can result in pain.Weight:
People who are overweight or obese are more likely to get back pain as the extra weight puts pressure on the joints and discs.Overall health:
If someone has weak abdominal muscles which cannot give support to the spine, then they are more likely to get back pain. People who smoke or drink are also prone to get back pain because of their lifestyle.Structural problems:
Severe back pain issues can occur because of structural problems that can result in various conditions like changes in the spine ailment and scoliosis.Disease:
Various kinds of diseases can increase the risk of back pain, like cancer and osteoarthritis.Mental health:
Anxiety and depression are two major issues that can result in back pain and other health-related problems.
Symptoms of back pain:
Multiple symptoms can lead to back pain but can also occur gradually or suddenly. There is no specific time frame to when you can get it, but there are some kinds of pain that will help you recognize the issue.
Image Source: Photo by Michelle Leman : pexalsStiffness:
If you feel stiffness in your back, it might lead to back pain, and it can also be difficult for you to walk, move or stretch to feel better. There is a decrease in the range of motion once you start to feel stiff.Posture problems:
Various people face issues when they have to stand straight for a longer time. The torso goes to a certain side which is aligned with the spine, and it can make the lower back look curved instead of flat.Muscle spasms:
If you get a strain, then you are most likely to get a muscle spasm, too, which can contract uncontrollably. Muscle spasms can cause extreme pain, which might make other movements difficult.
Causes of back pain:Image Source: Photo by YuriArcursPeoplei: Freepik
Strains and sprains:
Back strains and back sprains are the most common causes of back pains. It can happen because of any kind of injury in the muscles or ligaments due to lifting something excessively heavy or the daily wear and tear. Many people strain their back by twisting, sneezing, and coughing continuously.Disk problems:
If the disks move from their positions, it can cause disk issues and press a nerve in the back. It can also tear the herniated disk, which can cause major back pain. The disks tend to get flatter with age, and there is less protection in certain cases.Structure problems:
There is a condition which is known as spinal stenosis, which can happen when the spinal column is too narrow for the spinal cord. There might be some nerve pain which can further lead to back pain. People who have this condition can feel issues like pain, stiffness, and difficulty moving.Fractures:
One of the common causes of back pain is a fracture which can occur because of an accident or any fall. Certain conditions further increase the risk of fracture even more.Arthritis:
Osteoarthritis is one of the most common back pain issues, which can cause pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the spinal cord. There are treatments for the same, but you need to contact your doctor frequently while facing this condition.Accidents:
Accidents are one of the most common causes of back pain, and they can cause severe physical problems. The severity of the issue depends on how bad the injury is for the back.Pregnancy:
In the later trimester of pregnancy, it is normal to get back pains. As you gain weight, you can expect some strain on your back which can cause issues.Tumors:
In severe and rare cases, there are tumors that are found in the back, which are more likely to spread in the body. It is risky for life and can also be a risk factor for back pain.
The treatment depends on the cause of your back pain. The severity of the back pain decides the treatment that is needed. You can talk to your doctor to understand the cause and then find the best possible treatment for it to feel better and heal the back pain.
Ways to prevent back pain:
It is essential to find ways to prevent back pain and learn ways to improve the lifestyle. Here are things that can help you in enhancing your everyday work and also prevent back pain:
Image Source: Photo by Kindel Media ; pexelsExercise:
Start doing low-impact exercises that won’t put a lot of strain on your back. It is essential to do things that will increase your back endurance and allow the muscles to work better. You can start walking, swimming, cycling and there are other choices too which might help you in keeping your back strong and healthy. You can also talk to your doctor before taking up any activity as they might help you understand the better ones for your health.Build muscle strength and flexibility:
It is essential to strengthen the core to give support to your back. Building muscle strength can help you in staying healthy and strong. It also helps in developing the core and keeps your back strong.Maintain a healthy weight:
Being overweight can lead to back pain and not just back pain but many other issues too. Being overweight can strain the back muscles and cause issues which is why it is suggested to maintain a certain weight.Quit smoking:
Smoking is injurious to health and increases the risk of back pain. The risk depends on the number of cigarettes you smoke daily, which is why quitting the habit can help reduce the risk.Stand smart:
Make sure that you are standing straight and do not slouch. Maintaining a neutral pelvic position when standing for long periods is essential because that will take off the laid from your back. It would help if you also alternated the feet to take the load off from one side. Good posture can help in reducing back pain and also takes off the stress from the back.Sit smart:
Make sure to choose a comfortable seat, as your sitting position has a lot to do with your back issues. You can place a small pillow to give support to your lower back and maintain the normal curve that is there. You need to keep your knees to the hip level to avoid any strain on the back.
Treatments for back pain:
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Lower back pain keeps getting better with pain relievers and ice. You can rest for a few days and get back to normal activities soon after. Here are several treatments for back pain that people usually go through:Medications:
Depending on the X-rays and the kind of back pain you have, the doctor will give you medications to relieve the pain. There are medicines to relax the muscles and prevent back spasms.Physical therapy:
A lot of people go through physical therapy to strengthen the muscles and give support to the spine. Physical therapy not only gives support to the spine but also improves flexibility, which helps avoid other injuries.Injections:
Depending on what the issue is, your professional will inject needles in the areas where you are feeling the pain. There are steroid injections that help in relieving the pain and also reduce inflammation.Surgery:
Some injuries are so severe that surgeries are needed. There are massive techniques to relieve pain in these situations which can be suggested by the health care professional.
The recovery time is different, and it depends from person to person. The treatment for back pain is also different as every person goes through a different intensity of back pain, so depending on that, there are treatments. Some people might feel better in a few weeks, whereas it might take months for others to feel better.