Low back pain
Low back pain is a widespread public health problem. Almost everyone, suffers lower back pains in their lifetime. It can be very severe pain and many may not respond to treatment. However, low back pain, can be treated with simple approach. If these approaches are not successful, effective methods can be applied.
Pain, may be blunt, jabbing or cada style. Pain can restrict movement, in fact, patient may not be able to stand upright. Acute low back pain usually develops suddenly after sports or heavy lifting. Pain lasting for more than three months, is considered chronic. If pain exceeds 72 hours ,one must consult a doctor
Severe back pain after a fall or injury should be checked by a doctor. Other findings to be noted are; while coughing or urinating, problem with bladder or bowl control, leg weakness, fever and pain. If any of these symptoms in conjunction with lower back pain, contact your doctor.
Causes of low back pain
Lower back pain usually happens due to muscle strain as a result of exercise and heavy lifting. Sometimes lower back pain may be related to a hernia or ruptured disc. Due to the sciatic nerve pressure, can lead to pain spreading from the hips to the legs. This is also referred to as sciatica pain. If your profession requires removal, towing, or overloading your spine, it can contribute to back pain. Hunchback posture pain can be found in those who sit behind a desk all day.
Excessive exercise can also be cause of lower back pain. Exercising heavily only on weekends may also triger lower back pain. Mothers were right when they said ‘’ stand upright’’. Our backs best support our weight when standing upright.
Whilst sitting our back sould be supported by pillow, sholders and legs should also be supported. While standing, our weight should be distributed evenly on both legs.
Our vertebrae are joined to the discs with a jell like consistancy. By aging and trauma these disks can weaken hence leading to rupture then to hernia. Consequently, suffering sever pain.
Some chronic ailments can also lead to back pain:
Spinal stenosis (narrow channel): narrowing of the area surrounding the spinal cord may cause pressure.
*Spondylitis: severe inflammation of the joints in the spine or the resulting back pain linked to arthritis, rigidity and stiffness
*Fibromyalgia: common muscle pain which runs to the waist.
Most people experience low back pains in their 30’s
*Work requiring workload
What causes lower back pain?
For your doctor to diagnose, he must know the characte, duration and frequency of the pain. In addition he will ask for some blood and Imaging tests.
Required imaging methods:
* The direct x-ray chart
* Tomography (CT)
* Magnetic resonance imaging (MR)
How to alleviate low back pain?
back pain due to muscle strain usually heal. But some measures can be taken to relieve pain. Rest, hot water bottle and warm bath can also relieve pain
You may not want to leave bed when in pain but if the reason is muscle strain you must continue with routine activities. 2 or 3 days of bedrest is going to weaken and limit your muscle strength thus leading to more pain.
If lower back pain should continue after 3 months yoga may help relieve pain. Yoga is a form of stretching exercise and will contribute to the coordinated work of the muscles. Other streching exersices can be benificial. A yogi must be consulted in order to give personalised exersices.
Lumbar traction and manipulation
Lumber traction, in the hands of an unprofessional can worsen or lead to irreversable nerve damage. Substantial number of people coming to pain and surgical clinics are the result of treatments carried out by untrained persons.
Massage in cronic lower back pain, especially combined with streching exercises can alleviate pain.
Acupucture for back pain is debatable. A study of acupucture showed the same result as when a patient was inserted with toothpicks. Dry needle therapy can be applied depending on the pain in muscle spasm. But such patients can also recover themselves. However, Acupuncture and other such methods, can not cure lumbar hernia, narrow spinal canal.
Mild lower back pain is usually relaxed with simple pain killers. Drugs like paracetamol, ibuprofen, diclofenac, meloxicam. Pain relief creams and gels can also help releave muscle spasms. However, you should contact your doctor if in severe pain.
Injections and minimal invasive interventions
If pain is not relieved with injection or minimally invasive interventions, operation may be needed. Provided the treatment, these operations can relieve pain in short term or long term. Information concerning treatment without operation can be found on the web-site ‘’Treatment Methods’’
If pain should continue regardless treatment methods, you may require surgery for hernia, widen narrow-channel or to place metal instrument to stablise spine.
If pain has restricted your activities for a long time, rehabilitation program can be made to strengthen muscles and to maintain quality life. Stretching and strengthening exercises with a physical therapist can contribute to your health without damaging your lower back.
Strengthening lower back
Basically there are 2 exercises that can be applied to strengthen the lower back muscles. These are flexion and extension exercises. Flexion exercise, leaning forward on your knees, enable streching in hips and waist. Whereas in extensor exercise leaning back enables the muscles to support and enhance spine. Another example is to lift legs while lying facedown. Some exercises may be objectionable due to the severity of your pain. You must consult your doctor.
Prevention of lower back pain
It can be said low back pain may not be the result of aging. However measures should be taken.
*Maintaining healthy weight
*Straighten up using your legs not back
*Proper working position