If you are reading this article, there is a good chance that you have lower back pain. Lumbago or lower back pain is a common disorder that involves the bones and muscles of the back. According to statistics, around 50% of people suffer from lower back pain at some point in their lives. Ignoring lower back pain is not a good idea as it may get worse if not treated right away. In this article, you will learn causes of lumbago, its stages and precautions you should take. We will also be talking about the consequences of ignoring lower back pain.
Assessment of Lower Back Pain
Unfortunately, people with lower back pain tend to ignore it until it gets worse. When the pain aggravates, it becomes harder for the doctor to diagnose it because the severity of the pain is difficult to measure. The doctor will examine you, and will assess the severity of the pain based on your description of the back pain, your facial expressions and the degree to which the pain affected your routine activities.
Causes of Lower Back Pain
You may have lower back pain due to disorder in the intervertebral discs, vertebrae, muscles or the ligaments of the back. Aside from this, if you have any of the ailments, such as osteoarthritis, disc prolapsed, or kidney stones, they might lead to back pain as well. But for most patients, back pain is caused by bad posture. The five main causes of back pain include:
- Muscle strain
- Damage to the intervertebral discs
- Spinal Stenosis
- Lumbar Spine Arthritis
You can read more about Common Causes of Lower Back Pain here.
Categories of Lower Back Pain
Based on the severity of pain and its duration, lower back pain can be broken down into following categories.
- Acute back pain: Its duration is, for the most part, 6 weeks. Around 80% of patients with back pain suffer from this episode of pain.
- Chronic back pain: Most people ignore chronic back pain because it is mild (bearable) and lasts for up to three months. During this period, the pain continues to increase and decrease. You will have back pain from time to time but it might not be as severe. Chronic pains are very hard to heal or be treated so the situation becomes a lot more complicated over time.
- Coccydynia: This term refers to the pain in the tailbone area. This pain occurs when you sit too abruptly.
- Sciatica: This pain starts in the back and moves down to legs and you might even feel numbness. See a doctor immediately if you think this is your case.
If you keep ignoring your Lower Back Pain…
Lower back pain, if left untreated, can have lots of adverse effects on you. Many research surveys and research studies show that some people with back pain have to give up sex due to the pain. Many admit that the pain severely affected their relationship with kids, family, colleagues and friends. Some patients become short-tempered and suffer bad mental health. Chronic back pain may affect your work and study as well. Some housewives even find it hard to do daily chores. In a survey of over 2,000 participants, experts found that 19% of people with back pain were unable to enjoy their hobbies. About 14% were not able to drive and 8% were found it close to impossible to take good care of their kids. Even if the pain is not severe, it is definitely affecting your quality of life and distracting you to do whatever you should be focusing your energy on.
The habit of ignoring back pain can cause a whole lot extra problems for you. So dealing with your lower back pain and fixing your posture is highly recommended. In spite of taking the advice given this article, if you still feel severe pain in your back, we recommend that you talk to good physician (talking to an orthopedic surgeon is even better). Keep in mind you cannot get rid of back pain overnight, but that doesn’t mean you cannot alleviate it. There are a lot of exercises and stretching you can do at home that can tremendously help! To know more about these check out our Exercises and Stretches sections.
See also: Stretches your can do in the Office