There are statistics out there they say at least 80% of the U.S. Population will experience back pain at least one during their lifetime. They also say that there is a good chance that if the condition is not properly taken care of that the chance of having recurrent, chronic low back pain is common. So why does it seem to affect the low back so much ?
First off, the low back, also called the lumbar spine is comprised of five vertebrae that have the thoracic spine above and the sacrum below. The lumbar spine is utilized in many common daily activities. When we sit, we flex our low back. Doing this for long periods of time and with poor biomechanics we can cause stress to the spine. Bending and lifting also utilizes the low back. Remember to lift with your legs and not with your back ?The purpose of this is to take the pressure off of your spine and more on the lower extremities. Bending with your spine without lower extremity involvement increase the pressure in the low back tremendously ! The increased pressure has the ability of damaging the discs, or the cushions between each vertebrae. When these discs are damaged or herniated, it can put pressure on the nerve coming out of the low back. (see my blog on spinal stenosis). The curve of the lumbar spine is fixed in a way that the weakest part is in the back of the spine, not the front. It just so happens that the nerves are coming out of the back of the spine, not the front. It is uncommon to have disc herniations in the front. The curve of the low back is in a "s" shape. When the curve is lost- by several reasons, poor posture, weak stabilizing muscles, previous trauma, improper biomechanics, the pressure is taken off areas made to be supportive and placed on other areas that take up the brunt of the stress. With time, these forces cause wear and tear (arthritis, degenerative discs) which eventually can lead to symptoms.
If you have gone to a doctor for your back pain and you were only given a muscle relaxant and pain reliever, you are sweeping dirt under the rug. If not properly treated, or left untreated, your body will heal itself. But it will heal itself wrong ! Damaged muscles have scar tissue formation ( a normal part of healing, but detrimental if not treated correctly). When scar tissue forms in the muscle, the muscle is shortened and when the muscle is shortened it cannot put a joint through it's proper range of motion. It takes only six months before degenerative changes start to be observed on x-rays.
So if you have experienced back pain for the first time, or you have recurring back pain, you need to be treated right or you may experience a lifetime of reoccurrences. The progression of treatment is to get out of pain first. But getting pain free does not mean your condition is healed. That is where many patients drop the ball with treatment. Every patient is different but sometimes pain may linger for weeks or months. Once the pain is diminished, you can start to do rehabilitation-getting your body stronger to prevent it from happening again, or if it does happen again, the severity will be diminished because of the attention to your body. Lastly, maintenance plays a role in staying healthy. Just like you give your car regular oil changes, tire rotations and tune-ups, you need to keep your body in shape. This includes doing your home stretches and exercises on a daily basis, visiting your chiropractor regularly for check ups and choosing wisely on your activities of daily living ( no more lifting from awkward angles !).
So if you have experienced low back pain, numbness and tingling in your feet, limited range of motion, arthritis, pain with movement, disc bulges, disc herniations you need to contact Auto Accident pain Relief Center of Illinois at 800-862-5914. Call us today, 24/7 !