Lower back pain affects most of the individuals across the world. Whether you are a housewife, a student, a sportsperson or a working professional lower back pain may arise at any age. Work exertion or bad posture or long travels, it can arise due to so many reasons. However, there are certain precautions and exercises that can be practiced to overcome the back issues. The key is to identify the cause of your back pain.
Causes of Back Pain
The spine is made of many vertebrae that are stacked on top of each other. These are separated by cushioned discs that slowly wear away as one grows old. As these discs deteriorate, the friction caused by the bones rubbing against each other causes irritation and inflammation. It can also arise due to pinched nerves and can lead to numbing of body parts. Though many of these issues can only be healed via surgeries, many can be resolved by pain management strategies.
Muscle or Ligament Strain
Another major cause of back pain is an injury that may be due to soft tissue damage. This occurs when the muscles, ligaments and tendons are strained. Lifting heavy loads without warming up, twisting or sudden movement of the back in a faulty pattern causes strain or microscopic tear(s) of the back muscles. Remember to always lift with your legs!
Herniated Lumbar Disc
When a lumbar disc herniates, it compresses the spinal cord or nerve root which causes pain shooting down to either or both legs and/or can cause weakness in the legs. Sciatica describes the symptoms caused when a nerve root in the lower spine is compressed, causing pain and numbness to travel along the large sciatic nerve that serves the buttocks, legs, and feet.
Bone fractures may also lead to damage to your spine and back. One of the most common causes of fractures is osteoporosis. It is the condition when bones become weak. It is a common problem in adults and can be avoided with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
Treatments for Back Pain
Correct your Posture
Don’t Slouch, Be Erect. Keep your chin parallel to the floor, shoulders back and down, and your navel pulled in towards the spine. While standing, put equal weight on both feet to avoid overloading, and subsequent damage to the spine and hip. While sitting, check your thighs: they should be parallel to the floor, weight distributed evenly on both sides of the hip. When lifting things from the floor, bend your knees first and then bend down.
Strengthen your Back
Stronger back muscles can help you relive back pain. Try these moves to tackle pain.
Lie face down on a mat, arms locked behind hips. Now stretch your arms as much as you can. Inhale and lift the body (till navel) and hold for 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.
Start with a box position (on your hands and knees). Keep the spine neutral and raise one arm in front of you (in line with your ear). Engage all muscles of the arm by keeping fingers together. Along with the right arm, lift the left leg in line with the hip. Repeat with left arm and right leg. Hold for 10 seconds on each side and repeat 10 times.
Cat and Camel:
Again start with a box position (on your hands and knees). Raise your back up like making a hump (Camel). Hold this position for 10 seconds. Then arch your back down to make a hollow (Cat). Hold this position for 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times each position.
Make sure to call us to book an appointment to come in to iWellness.ca Rehab & Wellness Clinic for more exercises and other information on what you can do to strengthen your back and keep it healthy for the long haul.