What’s Causing Your Back Pain?
Back pain can take on different forms: stiffness and general discomfort, debilitating muscle spasms, and dull, burning sensations.
No matter the symptom, the soreness can affect how you go about your everyday tasks and significantly reduce your overall quality of life.
Back pain is a fairly common condition. In the U.S., it’s the biggest reason for lost workdays. A 2018 study reveals that low back pain is the number one cause of disability in the world and accounts for almost 33% of work-related disability cases.
Thankfully, back pain is treatable. The first step is to find out what’s causing it.
Here are the three most common causes of back pain:
Acute trauma is caused by a single traumatic event, such as a car accident or a sports injury. If you recently have been in an accident, it can be easier for you to determine the exact moment the pain started.
This kind of injury often involves sudden impacts or movements, leading to pain associated with torn muscles, damaged joints, or strained ligaments.
A bad posture is another problem many Americans have. It’s hard to find people with an ideal posture, which puts many of us at risk of back pain.
Standing, sitting, and lying in poor positions for prolonged periods can have long-term adverse effects on your spine. After months and years of bad habits, your spine eventually adapts to the wrong positions. And often, this misalignment is difficult to correct without professional help.
For instance, sitting at work for eight hours a day, slouched over the computer, will force your spine to adapt and compensate, which can lead to injurious patterns and pain. Your core exerts very little effort to support your spine, while your hip flexors and other muscles get weaker and gradually shorten. As a result, your movements are impaired.
These types of adaptations can lead to uncomfortable spinal stresses that cause premature wear and tear.
We can associate biomechanical problems, such as stuck joints and muscle spasms, to the previous two issues.
It is relatively common for an 8-5 office worker, who runs only occasionally, to develop weak glutes, tight hips, weak core, and often a fairly rigid lower spine. This combination of weak muscles and inflexible joints can mean that the spine is not protected well.
If you are experiencing this type of problem, harmless actions and movements can cause intense muscle spasms because your body is trying to support your spine.
One way to address back pain is through chiropractic spinal care. The chiropractor will adjust your spine to improve your body alignment (posture), reduce the pain, and restore movement. Chiropractic is considered a safe option that’s as effective as surgery and drugs in relieving pain and discomfort.
Your chiropractic physician will also help you transition into healthier behaviors. If you’re overweight, they can help with weight management. And if you’re a smoker, they can help you quit.
Lower back pain sometimes gets better on its own. When it doesn’t, there’s no reason you shouldn’t seek treatments available to you. For now, avoid doing things that will worsen your condition.