Health

Don't Get Sidelined by Back Pain

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Back pain can occur for many different reasons including illness and injury. Back pain can also cause many challenges with mobility, comfort and physical function. There are many different ways to treat back pain but it depends on the cause and area of the back that is affected. It is very important to consult with a doctor before self-diagnosing or medicating to ensure that your health concern is being treated properly. Keep reading to find out more about the common causes of back pain and how to treat it effectively.

Common Causes

There are many different causes for back pain. It may be due to strenuous activity or illness. Some of the most common causes of back pain include:

  • Physical injury or strain
  • Arthritis
  • Scoliosis
  • Tense muscles
  • Ruptured disks
  • Infections
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Endometriosis
  • Pregnancy
  • Kidney stones
  • Spinal stenosis
  • Tumors

Risk Factors

Back pain can happen to anyone, but there are certain factors that may increase one’s risk including:

  • Poor physical fitness
    • Those who do not exercise regularly have a greater increase of developing back pain because they are not using their muscles and tendons.
  • Smoking
    • Smoking can decrease your body’s ability to get nutrients where they are needed. Smoking can also lead to the condition smoker’s cough which can cause back pain.
  • Your Job              
    • Your job can cause back pain if you sit all day with improper posture. If your job demands a lot of heavy moving and lifting you may also experience back pain.
  • Being Overweight
    • If you carry too much weight especially in the abdomen area you will find a constant strain on your back which leads to back pain.
  • Hereditary
    • Certain conditions and diseases that affect the spine have a genetic component.
  • Age
    • The older people get the more likely that they are to experience some sort of back pain due to the wear and tear that has been put on the body.
  • Disease
    • Many diseases including arthritis and cancer can affect a person’s back causing them pain.

Prevention

There are many things that you can do to prevent back pain. Keeping your body active through regular exercise can help you to keep your muscles strong in your back preventing strain. Being conscious of your posture and trying to correct it can also help prevent unnecessary kinks and aches. If you are lifting heavy items remember to lift with your legs to avoid injuring yourself.  

Diagnosis

If you have back pain that is persistent or begins with no warning you should make an appointment with your doctor. Your doctor will ask you about your symptoms and will perform a physical examination. Your doctor may also want other medical testing done including X rays, Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), blood tests, Computer tomography scan (CT) and more.

Treatment Options

Back pain can be treated in many different ways depending on what type of pain you are experiencing. If you are experience a sore or stiff back you can use cold or hot backs to reduce swelling and give relief.  Medications including muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory drugs, topical analgesics and more can all be used to help treat back pain. Rarely surgery is used but may be required for certain conditions including herniated disk, degenerative disk disease and more. It is important that you follow your doctor’s treatment recommendations for success in treating your back pain.

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