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What Is Back Pain

July 9, 2013

Most people have some form of back pain through out their life time. Its one of the most common reasons people call out sick from work or go to a doctor. Often times conservative treatment is all that is needed along with improved body mechanics is all that is needed to feel better from this common problem. The great news is surgery is rarely needed for back pain.

Some of the symptoms people often feel are muscle aches and soreness, sharp, shooting, radiating pain, or even numbness and tingling. These pains may last a few days or week, which are considered acute. If the pain lasts more that three months it is considered chronic.

No pain is normal, so it is advised that you see a good chiropractor to have a proper evaluation. Some symptoms are serious and need to be checked immediately such as pains at night while resting or lying down. Loss of bowel or bladder control, radiating pain down either or both legs, pulsation in the abdomen. Pains after a fall are a serious problems as well as any unexplained weight loss.

Your lower back is made of bones, muscles to move those bones, tendons and ligaments to hold it all together. Nerves roots exit the spine through holes or foramen which are large enough to allow for movement. Pads of cartilage are between each vertebrae or bone of the spine to give cushion while lifting or bending.

Back pain usually results from one of these structures being injured or inflamed. Muscles sprain/strains are the result of improper lifting, injury, or over use which leave you with a sore and ache. Disc injuries are more severe, but can see much improvement from proper rehabilitation. A common misconseption is that discs will “slip”, but because of being surrounded by ligaments, and being attached to the bone itself, this doesn't happen. Discs have material inside that pushes out toward the nerve and spinal cord causing varying degrees of impingement.

The final problem that can cause lower back pain is bone pinching on the nerve. These misaligned bones can happen due to injury, fall, bad posture, and arthritis. Chiropractors analyze these misalignments and work to properly remove subluxations and strengthen these areas to prevent the bones from moving again. Your doctor will go through a complete history to determine the cause of your pain, and may even want to see diagnostic tests like xrays and MRI's to get a better picture of the root of your problem.

Some rare, but serious conditions may include cancer, cauda equina syndrome, fractures and infections of the spine. Your healthcare professional will be able to determine if you have one of these.

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