Lower back pain is one of the most common reasons why people see their doctor. How common is lower back pain? It is estimated that around four out of five people will experience lower back pain at some point in their lives.
Lower back pain can affect a person’s mobility and prevent them from partaking in their favorite activities. Those with lower back pain may require assistance from caregivers to perform daily activities.
Many people with lower back pain chose to not partake in activities that may trigger their lower back pain. Staying home during event, outings and confine themselves to their room in a desperate attempt to avoid pain. It is no secret that lack of social interaction can affect a person’s mental health. No wonder people who do not have regular social interactions report a low quality of life.
Here are some common causes of lower back pain:
- Muscle or ligament strain: People with jobs that involve repeated heavy lifting can end up with strained muscles and ligament. A sudden awkward movement can also overwork a ligament or muscles. Ligament strain can also be caused by physical inactivity
- Arthritis: People with osteoarthritis often struggle with lower back problems. Research shows that arthritis of the spine can narrow the space around the spinal cord
- Injuries: The bones in the spine can break or a dislocation can occur during a traumatic event such as a car crash or a slip, trip or fall, leading to lower back pain
- Degenerative disc disease: Age-related deterioration can cause discs to wear down. As discs wear down, they exert pressure on the disc wall, causing it to develop tears, which in turn, can result in a herniation
- Structural problems: Congenital conditions such as lordosis, scoliosis and kyphosis can cause structural issues including abnormal curvatures in the spine. These deformities can place extra pressure on the muscles, vertebrae, tendons and ligaments, causing excruciating pain
- Other diseases and health conditions: Spine tumors, spondylosis, spondylitis, fibromyalgia, infections, kidney stones, abdominal aortic aneurysm and certain types of cancers can also cause acute lower back pain
Some risk factors include age, a sedentary lifestyle, and improper lifting. Overweight people, smokers, and people struggling with mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety also tend to have a greater risk of lower back pain.
- Some common symptoms of back pain include:
- Sharp or dull and achy pain that radiates to the bottom or down the back of the legs. Many people hear a pop during an activity
- Pain that gets worse in certain positions and gets better when lying down
- Difficulty moving or straightening your back. People with lower back pain often take more time than usual to get up from a seated position and may feel the need to walk or stretch to loosen up
- Posture problems – People with lower back pain may face difficulties standing up straight and may stand crooked or bent with their torso off to the side rather than aligned with their spine. This can cause the lower back to look flat instead of curved
- Frequent muscle spasms – A muscle spasm can cause excruciating pain and make it difficult for the person to stand, walk or move
Your doctor may start by asking you several questions about your medical history. They may ask you to describe your symptoms. When answering your doctor’s questions, be as specific as possible.
Next, your doctor may conduct a thorough physical examination to determine the root cause of pain and find out if pain affects your range of motion. They may check your reflexes and response to certain sensations. To acquire an in-depth understanding of your condition, your doctor may order X-rays, CT scans, MRIs or ultrasounds.
How Can Chiropractic Care Help Reduce Lower Back Pain?
There are several medications that promise instant pain relief; however, many of them are addictive. Their benefits are short-lived and they may even have some side effects such as fatigue, dizziness and confusion.
Many people grappling with lower back pain turn to chiropractic care to manage their condition. Chiropractic care is 100% drug-free, non-invasive and does not have any serious side effects when performed by an expert.
Over the years, several studies have shown that chiropractic care can be used as a standalone therapy or as an adjunct to other treatment modalities to effectively treat lower back pain.
Chiropractors use hands-on manipulation which involves applying gentle pressure with their hands to relieve lower back pain. Many chiropractors for lower back pain in Santa Rosa use a handheld device to deliver a low-force impulse to spinal joints.
Your chiropractor may use chiropractic mobilizations – low velocity manipulation – that aims to stretch the muscles and joints to take extra pressure off them. This allows muscles to relax and help increase the range of motion.
Many chiropractors use spinal decompression to gently stretch the spine. Spinal decompression therapy involves applying gentle pressure using a traction table or similar motorized device. The aim of spinal decompression therapy is to release tension and reduce the symptoms of back pain caused by different health conditions.
Your chiropractor for lower back pain in Santa Rosa may recommend some lifestyle changes and strengthening exercises in order to address the root cause of the problem.
Toth Chiropractic is a leading chiropractic health center. Dr. Douglass Toth uses chiropractic techniques to effectively treat musculoskeletal disorders. His ability to accurately diagnose musculoskeletal disorders and deliver patient-centered care sets him apart. To discuss your condition with him, call (707) 355-6535.