All About Lower Back Pain

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All About Lower Back Pain


Lower Back Pain Statistics, Causes, and Treatment

It has already reached epidemic levels with around 11-12% of the population being disabled by lower back pain (Balagué et al., 2011). Considered one of the biggest health issues facing the developed world, the number of people suffering from this ailment is only increasing exponentially. It has been established that nearly 80% of the population has visited the clinic for back pain related issues (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes, 2014). Given these statistics, one can assume that the need to address this matter has never been more urgent than now. While medical advances and clinical trials will help combat this menace and advance pain management in the long-run, you can too contribute towards lowering these statistics by making small lifestyle changes in your own way. Keeping inherent bodily and hereditary factors aside, most of us suffer from lower back pain as a result of poor judgement while engaging ourselves in everyday activities. Think about it; either you’ve lifted a heavy object too quickly or sat in one position for too long; both these actions can contribute to physical pain.

Contrary to popular notion, lower back pain affects all age groups and not just the elderly or seasoned athletes. Poor lifestyle choices and wrong posture are to blame for a majority of these cases. The fact that an average young adult spends a major portion of his waking hours in an office space speaks for itself. A sedentary lifestyle contributes significantly to lower back pain. The unfortunate part is that we are unable to get away from our busy schedules for the simple reason that doing so would cost us our livelihood. So, what would be the best alternative to combating this health hazard? A good way to look at this problem would be to make it a priority in the list of things to do to climb the success ladder. After all, there is no wealth without health. A better way to address back pain is by making room for exercise and physical fitness in our daily schedule.

Fortunately, you do not have to hit the gym in the first instance, but rather start following a few physiotherapy exercises at home. What this does is firstly, it’ll keep you active and gives you the momentum you need to exercise regularly. Secondly, physiotherapy has a lot to do with posture correction; you will be guided through the right techniques to strengthen your core and build a solid foundation to prevent back pain. The struggle with back pain is that it is a recurring phenomenon, which essentially means that you need to work at your physique and posture throughout your lifetime. Worry not, think baby steps; even the best of physicians will agree that remedies must be administered in steps. You need to condition yourself to adopting an active lifestyle. Lower back pain is categorized as either acute pain (< 6 weeks), sub-acute (6-12 weeks), or chronic pain (>12 weeks), and can be mostly combated with a few non-invasive procedures such as physiotherapy and exercise (Balagué et al., 2011).

Apart from considering back pain as a fleeting ailment, the other major reason why most fail to get proper medical consultation is the cost factor. While the epidemic has risen steadily over the past decade, the costs of treating back pain have not. Many choose to live with the pain till of course, the time when it becomes unbearable or in medical terms, chronic. It has been found that left untreated, acute low back pain transitions into chronic pain with time. The repercussions of this negligence are profound. Most people endure a prolonged period of depression, absence from work, functional incapacity, and other collateral health issues as a result of not seeking proper medical help. There has been slow progress in according patients affordable care; changes are nevertheless being seen in the manner in which medication is administered. More and more physicians and physiotherapists are tutoring patients and clients online. Established medical practitioners are imparting the right rehabilitation programs and exercise routine through video tutorials.

Online help also encourages self-managing, which is recommended as one of the ways to heal from pain. This is helping a significant portion of the adult population seek top-notch care from the comfort of their homes. Lower back pain originates as a result of disc degeneration. A good 30% to 46% of the cases wherein degeneration occurs is attributed to genetics and is considered hereditary (Balagué et al., 2011). For most of us though, this is an anomaly; your chances of developing back pain are more to do with disuse or improper conditioning of your body to the external environment than due to inherent medical conditions. This is good news because now you can condition your body such that you place less stress on your back. This can be achieved by following the right postural movements and also exercising on a regular basis. Studies have shown that the chances of back pain resurfacing after treatment are greater in the case of obese people. Therefore, it helps to exercise regularly and maintain a healthy body weight in order to prevent a relapse. Lower back pain exercises are easy to do and follow. While a sedentary lifestyle contributes to back pain, there is a good chance that too much vigorous activity can also put a strain on your back. So the important point to remember here is that too much of anything is a bad thing. Even exercise must be done in moderation.

The associated costs of lower back pain are significant even in countries with high social protection. This aspect of healthcare needs urgent attention so that communities and society in general is not impeded or disabled (pun intended….) by this malady. Seeking online physiotherapy help for pain management is becoming popular by the day and hopes to alleviate some of the grievances of those suffering. The good part is that treatment is available and effective; you only need to believe that this is not some elusive condition but a definite ailment that needs to be addressed on time to cure and prevent its recurrence.