Lower back pain is a common problem affecting people of all ages. But what causes lower back pain? Understanding the real reason for the problem is the key to treating it. There are several factors that increase the risk of developing back pain.
Common Causes of Low Back Pain
Here are some of the common causes of low back pain:
- Hectic work schedules, poor posture, poor lifting practices, and muscle imbalances
- Injury or overuse of muscles, ligaments
- Disc degeneration in spondylosis, Spinal stenosis, or narrowing of the spinal canal, spinal abnormalities
- Herniated disc, that is, when a disc bulges so far out that it puts pressure on your spinal nerves
- Fractures of the vertebrae
- Bone and joint conditions those existing from birth (congenital), degenerative changes, or due to inflammation of the joints (arthritis)
- Leg pain (sciatica) and numbness
- Pinched nerve or nerve root impingement
- Metabolic problems such as osteoporosis and osteomalacia
- Bacterial infection in the bone (osteomyelitis), in the spinal discs, or in the spinal cord.
- Failed back surgery syndrome
Back pain can be acute or chronic. Pain can manifest as throbbing, crushing, aching, stabbing, heavy or burning, depending on the cause. All these symptoms can be really painful and affect your daily routine, work, and family life.
Acute back pain can be relieved with some basic self-care. If your condition worsens, it is important to seek professional help from an experienced pain management specialist.
Different Pain Management Techniques
Treatment involves both the sensory and emotional components of pain. Depending on the nature of the pain and the physical condition of the patient, specialists employ different kinds of pain management techniques, which include:
- Exercise – Active back exercises are more effective in treating lower back pain
- Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) – It uses low – voltage electrical current for pain relief.
- Manual therapeutic techniques: Muscle relaxation massage therapy and physical therapy can provide significant relief
- Convulsants and antidepressants: These medications are both anti-inflammatory and analgesics (pain-relievers), effective in controlling pain.
- Prolotherapy – Also called regenerative injection therapy, prolotherapy involves injecting a dextrose solution into the ligament and tendon where the bones are attached.
- Radiofrequency radio ablation: It is an effective pain management option, where a probe producing localized heat with radio frequency waves is used to stun or destroy nerve fibers to reduce the sensation of pain.
To determine the appropriate technique, the physician will first examine the patient and conduct diagnostic tests to determine the source of the pain. By thoroughly analyzing and evaluating the medical history of their patients, doctors can identify the causes for lower back pain and suggest the best back pain treatment plan for quick relief.