What is the frequency of back pain?
Experience shows that about 90% of people have had back or neck pain at least once in their life, and in 50% these complaints are intermittent.
But is this a disease state? The answer to this question depends primarily on the strength, type of pain, and the frequency with which it occurs.
What are the causes of back pain?
For most people, the pain appears after a hard day, is not very severe, and disappears after a few hours of rest. In these cases, it is definitely not a disease. The cause of the pain is the overloading of the muscles that keep the back straight. These muscles are not consciously controlled, and especially with incorrect posture, they are in constant tension. Thus, they are overloaded. Then the pain appears – a signal that we need to take care of ourselves.
Back pain is often provoked by heavy lifting. Therefore, the basic rule is: always with a straight back. The weight should be lifted by squatting and loading the legs, not bending and loading the back. These recommendations also apply to those who have no problems or complaints.
One of the most common reasons for the sudden increase in complaints is a herniated disc. The spine is made up of vertebrae, and between every two vertebrae, there is a disc-shaped cushioning plate. Most often, it is a matter of prolonged wear and tear of this disc, due to which it ruptures. Its contents pour into the spinal cord and nerves and press on them. When the disc herniation is in the neck, the pain is directed to the arms, and when it is in the lower back, to the legs. The biggest danger in this disease is that the disc herniation causes damage to the compressed nerves, which is irreversible.
A common cause of constant and severe back pain is the appearance of “spikes “. These are accumulations of bone substances in certain places in the spine, which significantly change its mobility and configuration. The process is called osteochondrosis and it inevitably affects everyone as they age. What causes osteochondrosis and why some people are more severely affected than others is not known. It is suggested that frequent and mild traumas, called microtraumas, play a significant role.
Constant back pain can also be due to other diseases such as osteoporosis, infection, tumors, and others. Therefore, consultation with a doctor is imperative for any stronger and prolonged pain in the lower back. Only after a correct diagnosis can the most suitable treatment be selected.
When should we seek medical help?
But when should we worry about lower back pain? If the pain is stronger and longer than usual or does not go away after rest, there is reason to worry. It is especially alarming if the pain begins to move to the arms or legs, as well as if the muscle strength in one of the limbs decreases. Then you should urgently seek medical help to clarify the cause of the complaints.
In such cases, we should promptly seek the help of a specialist neurologist or neurosurgeon.
What can we do in our daily lives to relieve back pain?
We can significantly reduce complaints without much effort. Generally speaking, thinking about our backs more often. This means a comfortable position during work, periodic movement, and correct posture when loading. During work and at home, the back should be straight and the shoulders should be slightly pulled back – this is the position in which the muscles of the back are strained the least. This position of the body, apart from health, also helps with good appearance – a relaxed and slouched posture gives off a bad tone.