Looking For A Chiropractor In Augusta?
Call (762) 585-8232 For Appointment
(If lines are busy please try later)
"I could work again." "I threw my stick away." "My son played soccer again."
What’s going on to cause the pain in your back?
Lower back pain is something that many people experience. Back pain is the number one reason people visit a doctor and miss work. Back pain can strike even young children and is a leading cause worldwide of disability.
Back pain is more common as you age. The majority of Americans will experience back pain at one time or another in their lives. Only a few people may experience chronic back pain.
Augusta chiropractic treatment could be an option for these people.
What should I know regarding back pain?
Back pain can vary in intensity, from a dull, constant pain to a sudden, sharp or shooting feeling. It can happen suddenly from an injury or lifting heavy objects, or it can become more common as we age. Back pain can also be caused by too much exercise and not enough resistance to it.
The lower back, where most back pain is felt, includes the five vertebrae (referred as L1-L5) located in the lumbar region. These five vertebrae support a large portion of the body’s weight. Intervertebral disks, which are rubbery, round pads that cushion the spine and act as shock absorbers throughout it, keep the spaces between the vertebrae. Ligaments hold the vertebrae in their place and tendons connect the muscles to the spine column. Thirty-one pairs nerves are rooted within the spinal cord. They control the body’s movements and transmit information to the brain.
A majority of acute low back pain is caused by mechanical causes. This means that the spine, muscles, intervertebral disks, and nerves are not working properly. The following are some examples of low back problems that may be caused by mechanical factors:
A ligament or muscle strain. Repeated lifting and sudden awkward movements can strain the spine and muscles. Constant strain on your back may cause muscle spasms if you’re not in good physical condition.
Bulging or ruptured discs. Disks act like cushions between bones (vertebrae), in your spine. A disk’s soft material can burst or rupture, putting pressure on nerves. It is possible to have a ruptured or bulging disk without experiencing back pain. The most common way disk disease is discovered is when you get spine X-rays.
Osteoarthritis could affect the lower back. Sometimes, arthritis of the spine can cause narrowing around the spinal cord. This condition is called spinal stenosis.
If your bones are porous and brittle, pain can result in painful fractures of the vertebrae.
Back pain symptoms, whether caused by strain or misuse, can be short-lived and last for days or even weeks.
If your back pain persists for more than 2 weeks, consult your doctor. Sometimes, back pain is a sign of serious medical problems.
When a serious condition is ruled out, and especially if you are only able to treat symptoms rather than the root cause, chiropractic treatment may be recommended.
Back pain: Home and professional remedies
Self-care and home treatment can often improve back pain within weeks. Contact your doctor if your back pain:
- Lasts longer than a few more weeks
- Severe and won’t improve with rest
- Spreads down one or both feet, especially if pain extends below knees
- Causes weakness, pain, or tingling on one or both sides of the legs
- Unexplained weight gain
In rare instances, back pain could indicate a serious medical problem. Seek immediate care if your back pain:
- New bowel or bladder problems
- It is accompanied by a fever
- It can happen after a fall or blow to your back.
It is possible to rest from strenuous activities, but it can be helpful to move around, which will reduce stiffness, pain, and prevent muscle weakness.
Numerous products are available to help with back pain. Although there are many products that claim to help with back pain, such as special shoes or shoe inserts, it is not known if these products, along with specially-designed furniture and stress management programs, can be effective.
It doesn’t appear there’s one mattress that’s the best for back pain. It all comes down to personal preference.
Sometimes, OTC pain relief medication (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NSAID) is used.
Opioids may be prescribed for more severe pain. These medications, including oxycodone or OxyContin and a combination (acetaminophen/hydrocodone) of acetaminophen/Vicodin, act on the body and brain to reduce pain.
While antidepressants like amitriptyline are sometimes prescribed, there is still much to be learned about their effectiveness.
Cortisone injections: These may be used in place of other options, such as injecting cortisone into the epidural spaces, which are located around the spinal chord. Cortisone acts as an anti-inflammatory medication. It reduces inflammation at the nerve root. It may also be possible to inject injections to treat pain.
Botox: Botox, also known as botulism toxin, is believed to reduce pain by paralyzing spasm-producing muscles. These injections can be used for up to four months.
Traction: To stretch the back, weights and pulleys can be used. This could cause a herniated or bulging disk to shift back into the proper position. You can also feel relief from pain, provided that you apply traction.
Physical therapy: This may include heat, ice, ultrasound and electrical stimulation.
As the pain eases, the chiropractor may suggest some flexibility and strength exercises for the abdominal and back muscles. It is possible to improve posture.
For back pain prevention, the patient will be encouraged not to stop practicing the techniques after they have gone.
Experts believe that TENS stimulates the body’s production of endorphins, which may help to block pain signals from the brain. TENS has been studied in a variety of ways. While some studies did not show any benefits, others suggested that TENS could be beneficial for some people.
Back pain surgery is extremely rare. Patients with a herniated spine may have to undergo surgery, particularly if they are experiencing persistent pain and nerve compression. This can lead to weakness.
It is recommended that you consult a chiropractor for long-term relief.
Causes Of Back Pain
Many times, back pain does not have a cause. A test or imaging study can help diagnose the problem. An experienced chiropractor will often be able pinpoint the cause.
These conditions are frequently associated with back problems:
Strained muscles can often cause back discomfort. Strain is often caused by incorrect lifting heavy objects or sudden awkward movements.
Overactivity can also cause strain. A good example is stiffness and soreness from too much activity, such as yard work or playing sports.
Vertebrae is the interlocking bone structures that form the spine. Discs are a type of tissue that cushions the space between vertebrae. Disc injuries can cause back pain.
Herniated or bulging discs can cause pain. Sciatica, or irritation of your sciatic nerve, can be caused by a bulging disc pressing down on the nerve running from your back to your legs. Sciatica can occur in the leg as follows:
Back pain can also be caused by spinal osteoarthritis. It occurs when the cartilage and joints of your lower back are damaged or degraded.
The osteoporosis process, which results in a loss of bone density or thinning, can cause small vertebrae fractures. These fractures, also known as compression fractures, can cause severe pain.
Although there are many possible causes for back pain, most of them are uncommon. If you are experiencing persistent back pain that doesn’t go away, it is important to consult a doctor.
Back pain can happen to anyone, even teenagers and children. These factors may increase your chance of developing back problems.
It can occur from injury, physical activity, and other medical conditions. There are many reasons why back pain can occur in people of any age. The likelihood of experiencing lower back pain as we age increases due to factors such a previous occupation or degenerative disk disease.
Lower back pain can be related to the bony spine, discs between vertebrae, ligaments surrounding the spine and discs and spinal cord and nerves.
Retaining a hunched or slanted position when using computers can cause back and shoulder problems.
Back pain symptoms
The most common symptom of back discomfort is a pain or ache in the back. Sometimes, it can even go all the way to the legs and buttocks.
How to prevent pain in the back
Regular exercise is a great way to build strength and maintain a healthy weight. Without straining the back or lifting heavy weights, aerobic exercise can be guided and low-impact. Talk to a doctor before starting an exercise program.
Your back and abdominal muscles are what keep you upright during physical activity. They can be strengthened to help reduce strain or pain in your back.
Include core-focused strength training in your workouts a few times per week.
You need to ensure that your diet contains enough vitamin D as well as calcium. It is also important to control your weight.
Smoking: An even higher proportion of smokers experience back pain than non-smokers.
Back pain can be affected by the weight and where you carry it. It is significant that there is a difference in back pain risk for obese people and normal-weight people. Also, people who have their weight in the abdomen area rather than the buttocks or hip area are at higher risk.
Poor posture can put extra pressure on your spine and cause strain. This can cause pain and injury over time.
Standing position: You should have a neutral pelvic alignment. Keep your head straight forward and your body balanced on both feet. Keep your legs straight. Your head should align with your spine.
When sitting, be sure to maintain a straight spine. A good working seat should offer good back support and armrests. Keep your hips and knees flat when sitting. You should be able to stand upright and have support in your lower back. You should ensure that your elbows and forearms align with the keyboard.
Lifting is dangerous.
So that you can keep your balance, you should be able to straighten your back. You should only bend at your knees and hold your weight near your body. Then, straighten your legs and change the position of your back.
It is normal to bend your back at first. However, if you do, don’t stoop. Tighten your stomach muscles to pull your pelvis in. It is important to not straighten your legs when lifting. If you do, you will be using your back most of the time.
Do not lift and rotate simultaneously. Keep your eyes straight ahead when lifting, and not looking up or down. Your back should be like a straight line that runs from your spine.
Moving things: It is easier for your back and legs to push things on the ground using your leg strength rather than pulling them.
Your back support is vital. You should ensure that the wing mirrors do not twist. The pedals should be directly in front your feet. It is a good idea to take breaks on long trips. Walk around the area instead of getting in your car.
Your mattress should be able to support the weight of your shoulders, buttocks, and spine. Be careful not to make your neck curve into a pillow.
You should avoid carrying heavy purses, laptop bags, luggage, or briefcases that place unnecessary strain on your neck and spine.
Use bags that have a more even weight distribution, such a backpack, to reduce the amount of things you need to transport. Use a bag with wheels if you are able to reduce the weight.
Back Pain Risk Factors
Sometimes back pain is caused by a problem in how your spine, muscles, discs and nerves move.
Although age is a factor, there are other factors that can cause low back pain, such as injuries, poor posture and illnesses.
Age: Low back pain usually starts between 30 and 50 years old. As you get older, the likelihood of experiencing back pain increases. The loss of bone strength due to osteoporosis may lead to fractures. Additionally, muscle elasticity can decrease and tone is affected. With the passage of time, intervertebral Discs start to lose fluid flexibility and fluidity. This reduces their ability for cushioning the vertebrae. Age also increases the chance of spinalstenosis.
As we age, our bones, discs, and ligaments can become weaker. While this is a normal part of aging, it does not have to cause pain.
As we age, our discs in the spine shrink and the spaces between vertebrae get narrower. An osteophyte is a small piece of bone that can form around the vertebrae and facet joint edges.
This medical term is spondylosis. It is similar to changes that osteoarthritis causes in other joints.
Maintaining a healthy spine and strong muscles around the spine, pelvis, and surrounding areas will help reduce the effects of spondylosis.
Fitness: Back pain is more common for those who aren’t physically fit. The spine may be not supported by weak abdominal and back muscles. Weekend warriors–people who exercise frequently after being inactive during the week–are more likely suffer from back injuries than people who have moderate daily activity. Research has shown that aerobic exercise, which is low-impact, can help to maintain intervertebral health.
Weight gain: Being overweight, obese or rapidly gaining weight can place stress on your back and lead directly to low back pain.
Genetics: Back pain can be caused by a variety of factors, including ankylosing spinelitis (a form arthritis that causes fusion of the vertebral joints and immobilization).
Factors associated with your job: Any job that requires heavy lifting or pushing or pulling, or involves twisting or vibrating your spine, can lead injury or back pain. Poor posture or sitting in a slouchy chair can cause pain.
Overloaded backpacks can lead to muscular fatigue in children.
Your mental well-being can have an impact on the risk of backache. Anxiety, depression, and stress can make you more susceptible to back pain.
Pregnancy Weight Gain, Hormones, And Back Pain
It is common to experience back pain in the third trimester of pregnancy. There are many causes. You should talk to your doctor if you feel the pain is related to something else.
As your baby grows, your center of gravity moves outward. The change in balance will affect your spine and back arch. This increased stress placed additional strain on the lower lumbar spine.
While weight gain can be healthy, even the small amount you will gain over the course of nine months can cause more strain on your back or core muscles.
When your body prepares for giving birth, hormones are released that cause the ligaments that support your pelvis (lumbar spine) to be loosen. These hormones can lead to pain and discomfort by causing your spine bones to shift.
Your Amazing Spine
The spine, also known by the backbone (or spinal column), is one the most strong parts of the body. It allows for great flexibility and strength.
It is made up 24 bones (vertebrae), each one on top of another. These bones are supported with strong ligaments and muscles and have discs between. There are also bones in the tailbone that run down the back. They are fused together without any discs.
Many small joints, known as the facet joints, can be found on either side of the spine. They run from top to bottom.
The spinal cord connects directly to the brain at the base of your skull. It also connects to other parts of your body via nerves that run between the bones of your spine. These nerves are also known by the term nerve roots.