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Back Pain

Are you suffering from back pain?

A woman is holding her upper and lower back because they hurt.
Suffering from back pain is one of the common problems for visiting doctors and is a leading cause of disability worldwide. Persistent back pain can affect your daily life, making you miss work and reducing productivity.
Depending on the degree of severity, your back pain can be a dull persistent ache to a sudden, sharp pain requiring immediate medical attention.
Back pain, although common in the lumbar region, can be experienced in your neck region, upper back, lower back, and the tailbone area of your spine.

Back pain can be classified into:

Acute: When the pain lasts less than six weeks
Sub-acute: Where you suffer from the symptoms between 6 to 12 weeks
Chronic: When your back pain lasts more than 12 weeks

Risk factors for back pain

Although most people would experience some degree of back pain in their lives, you are more susceptible to back pain because of the following factors.
Age. You are likely to experience more instances of back pain as you age.
Obesity. Having excess weight can put pressure on your back, aggravating back pain.
Lifting heavy weights. If you use your back instead of your legs while lifting heavy weights, the added stress can cause back pain.
Diseases. Arthritis and cancer can cause back pain.
Psychological factors. Anxiety and depression can make you prone to back aches.
Smoking. Smokers are more susceptible to back aches.

Causes of back pain

At least 90% of the back pain occurs without specific reasons and can be attributed to improper posture, everyday stress and strain on the back muscles, and other lifestyle factors. Other reasons why you can experience back pain can be:
A chiropractor examines a patients lower back to determine treatment for back pain.

Medical conditions

You can suffer from back pain as a side effect of an underlying medical condition like:
Osteoarthritis: It can affect the lower back and arthritis in the spine.
Osteoporosis: It can cause fractures in the vertebrae, causing acute back pain.
Kidney stones: They can become lodged in your ureters and may block the flow of urine, causing the kidney to swell and the ureter to spasm.
Pregnancy: Your ligaments stretch and become softer during pregnancy, and can place strain on the joints.
Fibromyalgia: It causes widespread fatigue and muscle pain.
Tumors: They can develop on the spine and the adjoining area.
Infections: Infections of the bone, spine, and discs.

Structural conditions

You can experience back pain because of structural issues of the spine, discs, muscles, ligaments, and tendons in the back like the following:
Stress and strain caused to the muscles and ligaments in the back area because of injuries, improper posture, or due to lifting heavy weights;
Herniated discs causing wear and tear in the spine area;
Spinal stenosis results in spinal column narrowing, putting pressure on the spine and nerves.
Back pain can be classified in the following way, depending on its area of occurrence in the back region.

Upper Back Pain

The upper back comprises the area between the base of the neck and the bottom of the ribcage. Pain in the upper back can result from poor posture and underlying injury or muscle strain.

Symptoms

For most people, mild or moderate pain in the upper back feels like:
Stiffness or tightness in the muscles
A dull, throbbing pain
Tingling or numbing of the affected area followed by muscle weakness
A sharp, burning pain
Pain that radiates along the affected nerve

Lower Back Pain

It is the most common form of back pain in people and can result from stress and strain in the lower back and underlying injuries and diseases.

The lumbar spine or lower back consists of a complex structure of interconnected bones, muscles, ligaments, joints, and nerves. They support your upper body and assist in movements like twisting, bending, walking, and running.

Lower back pain can be:

Mechanical pain. It can be due to poor posture, daily wear and tear, other age-related factors, or any injury to that area.
Radicular pain. The pain can occur because of inflammation of the nerve roots. Radicular pain can be a sharp, burning sensation that follows the nerve roots to the buttocks or legs.

Symptoms

Some of the common symptoms of lower back pain are:
Acute pain. It comes suddenly and lasts for a few days and is usually a response to an injury or tissue damage;
Sub acute pain. The pain is mechanical and can last a prolonged time between 6 weeks to 3 months;
Chronic pain. It lasts more than three months and can be severe. It may not respond to standard treatment and can require thorough medical diagnosis and specialized treatment.

Middle Back Pain

The middle back or the thoracic spine includes the area of your back between the rib cage and the base of the spine. You can experience mid back pain because of the following causes:
Age-related problems, including thinning bones, reduced muscle mass, and reduced spinal fluids between joints
Herniated discs in the middle back do not always cause symptoms. Still, you can feel pain or numbing sensation in the affected area.
Kidney problems like stones or an underlying infection in the kidneys can cause pain in your middle back.
A fractured or broken bone in the vertebrae of your middle back can cause pain, tingling, or numbness in the affected area.
Structural problems like poor posture, stress and strain in the middle back, obesity, and other lifestyle factors like smoking can cause pain and discomfort in the middle back.

Symptoms

While most symptoms and their severity will depend on the cause of pain, some symptoms of middle back pain are as follows:
A sharp, stabbing pain
Numbness or tingling in the affected area
Muscle stiffness or tightness
A burning sensation
A dull, throbbing pain
Other symptoms that can arise due to severe conditions are:
Chest pain
Weakness in the arms and legs
Numbness /tingling in the arms, legs, or chest
Loss of bladder or bowel control

Treatment of Back Pain

Back pain, based on its severity, can be treated using medicines, chiropractic services, and surgery.

Medications

Over-the-counter painkillers and anti-inflammatory medicines like ibuprofen are prescribed for mild to moderate pain, while severe pain may require opioids. Also, medication like muscle relaxants and nerve pain medicines are given to treat the symptoms.

Surgery

Surgery is helpful in conditions that do not respond to standard non-invasive treatments. Your chiropractor can refer you to a specialist where surgery is required to have a complete recovery.

Chiropractic Services

A chiropractor can help ease your back pain naturally by using the following techniques:
Spinal manipulation: Adjustment is made to the spine using a wide range of motion and applying force to the joints and muscles.
Flexion-distraction: A type of spinal traction used to treat joint disorders in the lower back.
Soft tissue release techniques: Utilizes precise pressure combined with stretching.
Exercise and stretches: muscles are stretched to relieve pain and improve spine mobility.

Visit Accident Care Chiropractic for Back Pain Relief

Back pain, if left untreated, can have long-term consequences. We at Accident Care Chiropractic can provide the best possible care and customized treatment for your unique needs.

Whether your back pain is work-related, a result of an auto injury, or some other reason, our experienced doctors can diagnose your condition to discuss your back pain treatment options. The right treatment can provide immediate pain relief, and help to prevent it from becoming chronic.

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