Banishing Low Back Pain
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Banishing Low Back Pain

According to experts, Back ache is second only to the common cold as a symptom that sends people to their doctors and vast majority of the cases cannot be explained scientifically - most of the bouts of back pain resolve themselves .. However,it is advisable to be alert to certain warning signs that need medical attention since some cases with mild pain might turn out to be serious ,complicated issues and steps should be taken immediately...

According to experts , although backaches are common , painful and also expensive they are rarely serious.Half the bouts of back pain resolve in less than a week and three quarters are gone in a month, only five to ten percent of the cases turn into chronic pain that lasts a life time. One should also know that Back ache is second only to the common cold as a symptom that sends people to their doctors. However, if you are suffereing from back pain and have found a way to live with it it is advisable to carry on without making any major changes since there almost as many remedies as theories about back ache and ones system is as good as the others.The best thing to do would be to find the simplest, least disruptive and least expensive approach that seems to work for you.To quote an example :- An aunt of mine has been suffering from backache since the time she delivered her first child which was 55 years ago.She has never taken medical help except in the intial stages , but has managed to carry on by trying out massages with warm medicated oil and a few simple exercise routine that has kept her back  ache within tolerable limits.

What Causes back ache

It is a very difficult question to answer since there are numerous causes like for example it could be due to Muscle spasms,strained muscle,poor posture,tight muscles,abnormal alignment of the spine,pinched nerves ,osteoporosis , disorder of the pelvic muscles or sciatica....so one has to choose from one of these or there may be any number of other reasons too.

It is really a long list , however according to medical experts , the most common diagnosis is not because of any of the above reasons .Surprisingly, vast majority of the cases cannot be explained scientifically. An individual with back ache may have arthritis,poor posture or pinched nerves, but in most cases the ache resolves even when these long-term abnormalities poersist.

When is Back Pain considered serious?

A severe back pain though painful, does not necessarily indicate any major medical problem. In most cases with some mild medication like a pain killer people suffering from severe back ache recover from it on their own, while some cases with mild pain might turn out to be serious issues.

Whether one is suffering from mild back ache or severe back ache one should be alert to certain warning signs that need medical attention

1, Onset of pain before the age of 20 or after 55

2, Any major trauma like a fall or an accident of any kind accompanied by back pain.

3, Radiation of pain down to the leg while one has back pain.

4, Numbness in limbs or loss of sensation while suffering from back ache

5,Weakness or loss of muscular strength together with bacxk pain

6, Impaired bowel or bladder control while you suffer from back ache

7,Pain in upper back or Chest accompanied by back pain

8, A previous diagnosis of cancer or any other major illness and now suffering from back ache.

9,Unexplained weight loss upto 5 kilos while suffering from backache

10, Back Pain that is constant , not affacted by movement and change of position.

If your back pain is accompanied by any one or more of these above symptoms you should immediately consult your doctor.

How to manage Backache

Using common sense seems to be the best option. Avoid lifting heavy objects, avoid repetetive bending and twisting your body,prolonged sitting in one position and also being as active as your pain will allow. It is not necessary to remain in bed all the time when you are suffering from backache, in fact a little normal movement may prove to be more beneficial since it loosens your limbs and muscles , also shifting your mind and concentration on other matters helps . An ice pack or hot water bottle can be applied which seems to help many who suffer from severe back aches.

Sit on a straight backed chair always and once the pain reduces try to do some back exercises.

Medication

Madication certainly helps since it facilitates a return to normal day today activities.For ordinary back ache that is due to over work or fatigue one can treat oneself with an over the counter drug like a pain killer unless you are not able to tolerate drugs due to some disorder in which case you will have to consult your doctor and discuss with him as to what would be the best option for you

However, when there are warning signals one must consult a doctor immediately, sespecially so when the pain persisits for more than 3 -4 weeks.

Although most acute back aches resolve themselves , some cases may need some additional treatment. A physiotherapy can be very helpful since it begins with an exercise programme and also has some other features like a cold or heat treatment.When this does not help doctors may treat the patient in certain select cases , with an injection of streroid into the most painful areas.

Exercises that help your back

Hamstring stretch , half sit up, Raising knee to the chest while lying down, press ups, bending forward while sitting on a chair,Pelvic tilt are some of the exercises that help our back to stay healthy .

It is also important to keep our back healthy by following certain regular habits regarding ones posture.A good posture is very important.

Standing with head held high,chin in and back flattened helps when it becomes a habit.

Sit as close as possible to the pedals while driving and have an additional firm back rest if you are troubled by mild aches when you have to drive long distances.

Sit up straight always , when you have to write or use the computer lean forward bending from your hips instead of slouching.Keep changing and shifting position every now and then.

While picking things from the ground, bend from your hips and knees and not your back.

Sleep on a firm mattress and place a slim pillow under your knees for added comfort.

For most people these regualr exercise and posture routine itself will help banish back ache or at least control it when it is a severe or acute case.

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Comments (3)

Great info and advice for lower back pain.

Nice advice, Kiran.  I had lower back pain years ago and the only exercise I needed was the pelvic tilt.  I still do that after gardening when my back is achy.

Great article overall - I heartily agree with your suggested stretches - they really do work!

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