Back pain is the leading cause of disability across the world. Before you attempt to treat back pain, it is important to know the underlying cause.
What is Causing Your Back Pain?
Lower back pain that occurs suddenly and doesn’t last for more than six weeks may be caused by heavy lifting or a fall. Chronic back pain occurs less frequently, and usually, your doctor will need to use an imaging test or study to locate its cause. Some of the conditions that are commonly linked with back pain include:
- Slipped discs: This pain occurs when the soft tissue in the discs between the joints of your spinal cord are out of place and your nerve tissues are compressed. Slipped discs are usually caused by wear and tear.
- Degenerating discs: As you get older, the discs that absorb shock between your spine’s vertebrae tear or shrink, and the bones may rub together.
- Accidents and injuries: Car accidents, falls, sports injuries, fractures, sprains, and strains can cause back pain.
- Spine fractures: If you break your spine due to a hit to your back, a fall, or osteoporosis, you may experience severe back pain.
- Injured tissues at the joints: When the muscles, tendons, and ligaments that support your spine and its joints are injured, it can result in a painful back. This usually happens when you lift something and twist. It may also occur due to sports injuries and car accidents.
- Arthritis: Osteoarthritis can cause pain in the lower back. When your spine is affected by arthritis, it can cause a narrowing of the space surrounding the spinal cord. This condition is known as spinal stenosis.
- Osteoporosis: The vertebrae in your spine can develop compression fractures when your bones get brittle or porous.
Treating Back Pain
When you visit NJ Spine and Wellness, your back will be examined carefully. Your physician will check your ability to stand, walk, sit and lift your legs. To get more details about the source of your pain, one or more of the following tests may be required:
- Bone scan
- CT or MRI scan
After diagnosis, your doctor may create a treatment plan that includes one or more of the following:
- Physical therapy: Physical therapy can apply different types of treatments, including heat, electrical stimulation, ultrasound, and muscle-release techniques. After your pain is relieved, your therapist may recommend various exercises to improve flexibility and strengthen your core and back muscles.
- Surgery: Most people do not need surgery to get relief from back pain. But if the pain is persistent or caused by nerve compression, you may need surgery. Surgical procedures are usually recommended only for pain caused by damage to the spine that does not improve with other types of therapy.