Are you experiencing lower back pain? It’s not uncommon. Lower back pain can happen to anyone, regardless of whether they have had an injury in the past or are at risk of developing it. It’s not always severe and can often resolve on its own. Sometimes, pain can be your body’s way to tell you something is wrong.
Lower back pain is a very common problem. The bottom portion of your back usually has five vertebrae, which is less than your neck or mid-back. These vertebrae are responsible for a lot of heavy lifting. Your lower back connects with your pelvis and bears the weight of your entire upper body. This area is subject to a lot of movement and stress. Injuries can result.
Lower back pain is most commonly caused by arthritis of the spine, which is the slow degeneration and gradual loss of spinal joints. As we age, our lower backs will begin to show signs of wear and tear. The cartilage between the spinal joint may begin to break down, causing inflammation in the surrounding tissues. Inflammation and thinning cartilage can cause friction to increase in the joints. This may lead to pain in the lower back.
Lower back injuries can be caused by a bad fall or an accident in the car. You can also carry a laundry bag up the stairs. Some injuries to the back can be severe and sudden, while others are more gradual and over time. It may seem that athletes and people who are active get more injuries than others. Chhatre said that this is not always true. It is just as possible to twist your back when you reach under the bed to grab a sock. If done incorrectly, it’s the daily tasks like holding a baby.
A bulging disc, also known as a herniated disc, is one that has lost its lining. This is most common in the lower back. Although the injury may not be severe, it can cause pain. Even though the disc may not hurt, its contents can press on nearby nerves or cause pain.
You are probably not experiencing lower back pain that is worse when the temperature drops or the weather changes. Barometric pressure and outside temperature can both be a factor in back pain. Pressure changes can sometimes lead to pain in the spine and arthritic joints. The environment can affect the way muscles and joints react, making them more susceptible to injury.
Yes. It is possible. Your kidneys are located on your backside. Kidney pain can sometimes feel similar to back pain. A thorough exam by a doctor is the only way to determine the difference.
Lower back pain may radiate to other areas of the body, up or down from where it originated. Lower back pain may be felt on one side or the other, which is normal.
It could be nerve pain or sciatica if the pain radiates from the lower back to one or both of the legs. The pain may radiate to the legs from many places in the lower back, including the muscles, facet joints, and sacroiliac joint.
Low back pain may be a sign of cancer. It is a sign of prostate cancer that has metastasized and created lesions. Nearly any type of cancer can spread to your back, and some, such as sarcoma can even originate in the back. You should be cautious if you experience other symptoms than lower back pain. If you are experiencing any other symptoms or concerns, talk to your doctor.
Start a log if your lower back pain is just starting. Keep track of your symptoms and the dates, as well as any activities that trigger or make the pain worse. If the pain persists, you can give this information to your doctor. This will help you diagnose the problem much quicker.
Once you have identified the motion or position that causes lower back pain, you can try to avoid it and then see if your symptoms improve. It may also be helpful to apply heat to the affected area. Over-the-counter pain relief medications that reduce inflammation can also be helpful. Remember that painkillers only treat the symptoms of pain, not the cause.
Lower back pain can often stop on its own. If it does not stop, these are some guidelines to help you decide when to seek professional help:
Your primary care physician is the best person to consult for your lower back pain. If your primary care physician is not able to diagnose the problem or treat it, you might be referred to a specialist such as a rehabilitation doctor (physiatrist). They can diagnose and treat many conditions that cause lower back pain.
You may be referred to a physical therapist or chiropractor later depending on your back pain. Lower back pain is often treated with surgery. Did you know that only one in ten patients require lower back surgery?