Lower Back Pain Treatment

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lower back pain

Back pain is often caused by poor lifestyle and posture. Lower back pain is so common that 80% of the adult population will experience it at least once in their life, stated the NIH (National Institutes of Neurological Disorders). Even though there are ways to treat the problem, it’s still the number one cause for disability that forces people to skip work, published the ACA (American Chiropractic Association) in their recent statistical analysis. In fact, more than 264 million workdays have been lost annually, just from back pain. If you too are living with constant lower back pain, or you know someone who does, you’ve come to the right place. To learn how to manage the condition, this page is a detailed guide on the symptoms, causes, and ways of treatment you can expect.

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What causes Lower Back Pain?

The human lower back is an intricate structure of ligaments, bones, joints, muscles, and nerves. They all work together to support the entire body, give us flexibility and strength. Without it, we wouldn’t be able to twist or bend. But, it’s also incredibly susceptible to pain or any kind of injury.

If you start to feel dull pain from the lumbar region (the section right below the ribcage), that’s when you experience lower back pain. When this part of the body has been injured, it will trigger an inflammatory healing response, and the inflammation will result in pain.

Many factors can contribute to lower back pain. One of the most common causes include bad posture, health condition, strain, and more, stated Medical News Today. The human spine is a complex but very sensitive structure. If there is any tension applied to the spine, the impact can damage the discs, ligaments, or cause serious muscle tension. If you lift anything heavy, walk or sit improperly, you expose your lower back to potential injury.

Symptoms of Lower Back Pain

The symptoms for lower back pain can range from mild, irritating, to severe. Depending on the severity of the pain, the symptoms will vary too. For some patients, the pain can appear out of nowhere, while for others, it will progress slowly and worsen over time.

According to the Mayo Clinic, the general symptoms include:

  • Radiating pain that travels to the legs
  • Discomfort
  • Stabbing/shooting pain
  • Sore muscles
  • Pain that goes away after reclining

If the nerves get affected, the back pain can radiate to other regions of the body, including the buttocks. Some health conditions can leave a lasting impact on the spine. Injections, sleep disorders, cancer, or other health problems can disturb the spine’s normal functions, therefore making it more vulnerable to pain or nerve problems.

Long term problems due to ignoring Lower back pain

Typical lower back pain will go away on its own. However, chronic pain can leave both a physical and emotional impact on a patient’s daily life.

People won’t be able to concentrate fully and have trouble sleeping. In fact, the longer the pain is left untreated, the greater the chance for developing depression. Due to the lack of sleep, depression rates can skyrocket.

Treatment for Lower back pain

For patients looking for non-surgical and drug-free treatment, chiropractic care can prove useful. This is a highly effective method for naturally soothing the pain. This type of treatment includes manual therapy with mobilization or spinal manipulation.

Spinal manipulation boosts the spine’s functionality. But, most importantly, it calms the nerves and helps the back work like it’s supposed to. Mobilization boosts the range of motion in the affected area and treats the pain.

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Do not ignore your Lower back pain, it can become worse overtime. It’s important to consult with the doctor and understand the root cause of Lower back pain.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT Lower back pain

Most insurance policies rarely cover any treatment for lower back pain. Some, however, may cover psychological treatment for chronic pain.

Cold is better to apply immediately after you’ve been injured, especially for a broken bone or physical injury. You can rely on cold to reduce the swelling and inflammation. Heat is meant to relieve tension and loosen the muscles.

Your sleeping posture might be the cause. Bad sleeping positions will put a lot of pressure on the spine. They can even flatten or curve it.

Place a pillow right under the knees and sleep on the back. This position will help the back relax and maintain a proper curve. 

Do some stretches. Try to practice yoga or anything that will gently stretch the muscles in the lower back without putting too much stress on the spine. 

Yes, walking is indeed beneficial for reducing pain. This is a low-impact exercise that provides the necessary movability to stretch the muscles. However, for certain spinal injuries, walking can make the pain even worse.

You might have accidentally hurt your back from overtraining. Even sitting for too long can make the back tight. Try to stretch the back to relieve the tightness.

The kidneys are often associated with back pain, particularly from kidney stones. But, it can also be the result of gynecological problems, pancreatitis (inflamed pancreas), inflammatory bowel disease, and more.

If the affected area shows any inflammation or the soft tissues have been injured, it will start to affect the muscles around the back at some point. That means the pain is probably muscular.

Walking is just like any low-impact exercise. It can be beneficial, but you should always listen to your body. If you notice that the body is reacting negatively to walking, try to rest or stretch.

Any compression fractures or a serious injury can tear the muscles and ligaments. This is often the cause of sudden lower back pain.

If the pain persists for more than four weeks or it gets progressively worse, you should seek treatment.

This type of pain is more prevalent in women than in men. In women, the pain is often associated with post-menopause, since the hormonal changes in the system can be a massive contributor to back pain. That also includes pregnancy, problems with the joints, osteoarthritis, and more.  

You can try many options, but, in general, you should stretch more often, watch your posture, maintain a healthy weight, use heat or cold treatment, and be active.

If the back pain has started to affect your stomach, increased the weakness in the legs, or affected your bowel/bladder control, it means you need urgent medical care.

TEMPORARY PAIN RELIEF

According to Harvard Health, in most cases, it’s best to let the pain heal on its own. But, if you don’t see any improvement in a few days, there are a couple of options you can try that will temporarily soothe the pain. These are:

  • Heat and cold therapies
  • Pain-relief creams
  • Rest

Immediately after the injury, it’s a good idea to apply an ice pack to the affected area. The cold will numb the area and reduce the swelling. Forty-eight hours after the cold treatment, it can be a good idea to place some heat pads on the spot. The heat can relax the muscles and speed up the blood flow.

If you want to try something with a more cooling effect, you can get pain-relief creams. According to research, using menthol cream on the affected area will desensitize the receptors and soothe the discomfort and pain.

But, if you don’t think you can handle any movement or sitting, it’s a good idea to get some bed rest.