How Do I Know If My Back Pain Is Serious?
Back pain is one of the most common health problems you may experience. As a matter of fact, most of us are likely to experience back pain at some time in our lives.
When experiencing back pain, it is important to find out why. The most common reason for back pain is poor posture. However, back pain can also be caused by disk damage, physical injury and disease.
Common health conditions that result in back pain are arthritis, osteoporosis and stenosis of the spine. A surprising amount of health conditions can affect our spinal column and the surrounding tissue.
Most cases of back pain are not serious. They can be resolved by over-the-counter medication such as anti-inflammatory medication or topical creams and gels. Cold and hot treatments work well and you should get some rest.
But, if you have experienced back pain for a longer period of time, it is important you find out why.
Back Pain Symptoms An Indication Of Something Serious
How do you know if your back pain is caused by a more serious condition? This is a list of symptoms to look out for:
● Pain or stiffness lasting longer than six weeks and not improving with over-the-counter remedies or self-help.
● Severe pain which interferes with your daily activities.
● Pain affecting your quality of life
● Sleeping interrupted sleep or insomnia
● Balance problems
● Repeated attacks of vertigo and dizziness
● Unexplained headaches and migraines
● Pain accompanied by fever, night sweats and weakness.
● Tingling in your legs and buttocks
● Trauma or a fall
If you notice any of these symptoms or a combination, you should always seek professional medical advice sooner rather than later.
What Will Your Doctor Do?
Diagnosing spinal conditions is often challenging. Without using diagnostic techniques, most general practitioners struggle to do so.
It is likely that your family doctor will refer you to a specialist. Alternatively, they may refer you to an osteopath or chiropractor.
When you are referred to a specialist, they will often take advantage of modern diagnostic methods such as MRI scans and other examination methods that help them to find out why you are experiencing back pain.
Will I Need Surgery?
Whether you need surgery or not depends on the condition you are experiencing. For instance, if you have a herniated disk, you may need surgery to help you recover.
At other times, your doctor will recommend treatment with anti-inflammatory medication and maybe even steroids.
Physical therapy is a great way of treating a range of health conditions that can affect the spine. This often consists of recommended back exercises, massage and gentle manipulation of the affected area.
Should I Worry?
It is easy to worry and become concerned when you experience back pain. Once you have been diagnosed, you will know what is causing the problem.
When you know more, it is imperative you follow your doctor’s or health professional’s advice. Often they prescribe drugs. But, it is just as likely they will issue you with a regime they expect you to follow.
A regime for back pain often involves exercises and periods of rest.
Do I Need a Back Support?
Not all back pain conditions require you to wear a back support. Once again, this is something you should discuss with your doctor.
When your doctor suspects poor posture is contributing to your back condition, it is likely they will recommend you use a back support to improve your posture.
Back supports can range from wearable supports to ergonomic furniture.
Most modern back supports are not intrusive. You can wear them underneath your clothes or only use them for a limited amount of time every day.
Perhaps the problem is not associated with the way you move or sit. Many develop back problems from wearing the wrong shoes or sleeping in the wrong position. It is important to have the right mattress for your body shape.
Exercising using a back support is a great way of making sure your back is aligned when you move. In particular, this is important when you lift weights in the gym or at home.
How Long Does Recovery Take?
The time it takes to recover from a more serious back condition varies. It depends on the severity of your condition.
There are no hard and fast rules. Many physicians advise you to find your own comfort zone.
It is best to recover back pain slowly. That way, positive changes are more likely to remain in place. Recovering slowly is important after back surgery. Muscles and tendons often need time to adjust and build up.
Weight Loss and Back Pain
There is a clear link between excess weight and back pain. The joints in our bodies are only meant to handle a certain amount of weight.
Obesity and excess weight add considerably to the risk of serious back pain and spinal problems. If your doctor tells you that your weight is the fundamental reason for your back pain, you need to lose weight.
The best way to do so is to watch your diet. However, it is also important to exercise when you are overweight.
If you find exercising hard, you can try exercising sitting on a chair. A good method is aiming to replace and reduce fatty tissue with muscle. Exercising for shorter periods of time is one of the best methods.
You should also incorporate walking. Going for a walk several times per day helps to burn calories and improves muscle strength.
Swimming is also good for you. If you find swimming using both your arms and legs challenging, use a woggle. Kicking like a frog with your legs helps to increase your range of movement.
Serious back pain problems are far less common, but they do occur. If you are concerned about your back pain, it is important you consult a doctor as soon as possible.
Faster treatment and resolution lead to a quicker recovery rate for most back pain conditions. If you are experiencing serious back pain, pick up the phone and call your doctor.
Brought to you by Your Back Pain Relief