Back pains are among the top reasons people go see their doctor and miss work. They’re incredibly common; around 70% of adults experience back pain at some point in their lives. The pain can range from mild to severe.
The most common symptoms of back pain include a sharp or dull ache. Your back may hurt while you’re standing up or when you’re sitting or lying down. It could also come on suddenly and disappear again. For some people, the pain will only appear when they move about in a certain way, for example, when lifting heavy boxes.
Watch out for these seven signs of back pain
1. Dull pain: Dull or throbbing pain may start in the lower back and can be accompanied by muscle spasms. This kind of pain could extend into your pelvis and hips.
2. Traveling pain: If you notice a sharp or stinging pain that moves down your legs and into your feet, it could be a sign of sciatica. Pain of the sciatic nerve is usually felt on only one side of the body.
3. Tingling or numbing pain: Sometimes aching in the back may feel like a tingle or a numbness that extends into the legs.
4. Shooting or stabbing pain: This type of back pain may feel particularly uncomfortable but usually comes on in short bursts.
5. Muscle spasms: You may also notice a tightness in your hip and pelvis muscles.
6. Pain after sitting: Because sitting puts pressure on the spinal discs, it can cause back problems when you sit for a long time. Usually this should resolve when you get up and move about.
7. Pain in the morning: Some people will notice a painful back when they step out of bed. This is usually due to stiffness and should go away once you move around for a bit. Your mattress, sleeping position, and pillows could also be causing your back pains.
It’s important to see a doctor right away if you notice any of the following:
Four common causes for back pain:
1. Muscle strain or sprains
When you stretch a muscle too far it can tear and cause a strain. Sprains usually affect the ligament. Strains and sprains are incredibly common types of acute back injury and they usually cause severe pain in the back. Frequent causes of sprains and strains are:
Spinal osteoarthritis is very common and effects about 40-85% of people worldwide . In particular, it afflicts older people. It occurs when the cartilage of the joints and discs break down. Osteoarthritis can be caused by injury or trauma and is more frequent in people who are overweight.
What back treatments are available?
The treatment depends on the duration and severity of the pain. Back pain can range from mild to severe. It can last a few hours or months.
Self-care for back aches.
It’s important to contact your doctor if you are experiencing pain. If your back pain is caused by a mild strain or sprain, there are a few self-care options to help you diminish the aching.
Managing persistent back pain
If you are experiencing back pain, be sure to discuss it with your doctor. They can diagnose your condition and recommend treatment. There are a number of common management methods.