If you experience low back pain, you are not alone. Around 80 percent of adults experience low back pain at some point in their lives. It is a leading contributor to missed worked days and job-related injuries. Low back pain can range in intensity from dull, constant ache to a sudden sharp sensation.
There is often a lot of misinformation that patients are exposed to prior to treatment. Here are 10 tips to help you better understand Low Back Pain:
- You can have co existing causes of pain: for example, a disc injury that then impacts a nerve root.
- Most low back pain is acute, or short term, and lasts a few days to a few weeks.
- There are only 3 structures that can get sore in the lower back: the joints, discs, or nerve roots.
- The term ‘sciatica’ is not a diagnosis in itself. It is an umbrella term that refers to any pain referred down the leg from the lower back.
- Tight muscles in the hips (gluts, hip flexors, quadriceps) place extra pressure on your lower back.
- A stiff thoracic spine (bit that is above the lumbar spine) will put more load on the lower back.
- Wearing high heels puts more stress on the lower back as the pelvis tilts downward and in doing so ‘jams up’ the lower back.
- Your back is meant to bend. Many people avoid bending their lower back after their pain is settled for fear of a return of pain.
- Your discs take on extra fluid of a night. This process is called ‘imbibition’ and it is needed to keep the disc healthy.
- Men and Women are equally affected by low back pain
If you are experiencing low back pain, talk to your doctor about the different treatment options available! Pain Specialists of Columbia’s physicians are board certified in pain management and can get you on your way to recovery!