What is back pain?
Back pain is a very prevalent issue and will affect most of us throughout our lives at some point. The good news is that it’s not a severe condition in most situations, and it might only be caused by a slight strain on a muscle or ligament.
It’s best to proceed as soon as you can with your usual daily activities and keep moving as long as necessary. And if you have a little bit of pain and discomfort at first, being active and exercising wouldn’t make your back pain worse. Staying active is going to help you get stronger.
Taking painkillers can assist you in doing so.
Back pain also has no single simple cause but may be caused by one or more of the following:
- Poor posture
- A lack of exercise causing the spine and weak muscles to stiffen.
- Strains or sprains in muscles.
There are also specific conditions, besides the conditions mentioned above, that are associated with pain felt in the back. Bear in mind that extreme pain doesn’t always mean that there is a severe problem.
Below are some common conditions listed:
- Spinal stenosis
Other more rare causes of back pain are:
Bone problems such as fractures are also related to bone thinning, known as osteoporosis.
- Catching an infection
- A tumor
- Inflammation, for example, the condition of ankylosing spondylitis.
When to see a doctor
Most back pain cases tend to clear up without the need to see a doctor, even though it’s normal. You should see your doctor if you are suffering from pain, that is:
- really bad
- lasts for a long time.
- It stops you from working or doing the activities you love
- It affects your everyday activities
- is getting worse.
If you experience any changes in sexual function, for example, being unable to get an erection, you should also see your doctor.
Your doctor will first examine you and ask you questions whether the pain causes you considerable difficulties and prevents you from going on with daily life and work activities.
These questions will help to determine how likely it is that your back pain will require further help. Your doctor can refer you to a physiotherapist if you need more support to get treatment early, help with the pain and return to normal activities.
It’s normal to want to know what caused the pain in your back. However, even after thoroughly examining you, doctors can not tell you for sure what has caused your back pain.
It will help to talk openly about your issues with a healthcare professional if you are worried about the cause of your back pain, as reducing any fear can help speed up your recovery.