Around 31 million Americans will experience lower back pain at some point in their lives, as the experts say, which would keep them from work and make them visit the doctor for back pain treatment. Adults between the ages of 35 and 55 are more commonly affected. Both men and women are equally affected by low back pain. Back pain isn’t usually serious, though it depends on the particular case of the patient. It could be the condition itself or merely a symptom of an underlying condition. The faster the root cause is identified, the earlier and more effective your treatment can be. Advanced pain management and physical therapy centers in Brooklyn, New York offer effective pain treatment and physical therapy programs that help address lower back pain.
What Causes Low Back Pain?
You can develop back pain abruptly as a result of lifting something very heavy, or following an accident. Back pain also develops over time because of age-related changes occurring in the spine. Another reason for back pain is a sedentary lifestyle. Spine-related pain in the lumbar area could involve the nerves, muscles, bones, tendons or discs that make up the area. Issues affecting any of these could cause pain.
Here are a few of the possible and usual specific causes of lower back pain:
- Sprains and strains
- Damage of joints, ligaments or bones
- Degeneration of any of the many intervertebral discs (disc degeneration)
- Herniated/ruptured discs
- Irritation of the roots of the nerves that extend to the legs (sciatica)
- Irritation of smaller nerves supplying the low back
- Spondylolisthesis, a condition wherein a vertebra of the lower spine slips out of place, pinching the nerves exiting the spinal column.
- Straining of the erector spinae or the paired muscles of the lower back
- Spinal stenosis or narrowing of the spinal column. This exerts pressure on the spinal cord and nerves, leading to pain and numbness while walking. It will ultimately result in leg weakness and sensory loss.
Now when do you need to actually to seek medical help when you are affected by back pain? Ordinary and harmless back pain could be caused by stress and strain, so a good deal of rest and an improvement in your sleeping posture could take care of it.
Knowing When to Seek Urgent Medical Care
However, if you suffer back pain caused by any kind of trauma you’ve experienced from an accident, you need urgent physical consultation. There are other factors too that indicate you need urgent care – if your back pain is accompanied with:
- Weakness in the leg which could be the result of sciatica
- Unexplained weight loss
- Sudden incontinence of bladder and/or bowel which could be cauda equina syndrome
- Continuous and severe pain in the abdomen which could be the result of abdominal aortic aneurysm, or
- Fever and chills
Persistent back pain can be quite nagging and debilitating. Eventually you will need to seek medical help. But there are many nonsurgical treatment options offered by advanced physical therapy and pain management centers. These therapeutic modalities are customized to the needs of patients.
Non-surgical Therapeutic Treatment for Back Pain
This includes spinal manipulation, in which a joint is moved safely beyond its usual range or movement for achieving improved spinal alignment. Ultrasound treatment involves delivering heat and sound waves to targeted body tissues, which helps increase the flow of blood and reduces pain while reducing muscle stiffness as well.
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation) is another advanced nonsurgical treatment method employing low-frequency electrical pulses for increasing blood flow and reducing muscle tension. Strength-training and stretching exercises are also administered for strengthening the spinal muscles. When it comes to trauma-related back pain, physical medicine and rehabilitation procedures take over.
At an advanced physical therapy and pain treatment center in Brooklyn, New York, you have a range of treatment options for your back pain.