Back pain is the most common problem, which can hamper our routine to a greater extent.Structures at the low back play a crucial role in our daily routine. The back muscles, spine, vertebrae, and the nerves contribute in almost every movement of ours. In standing and sitting the weight of the upper body is taken by the lower spine vertebra whereas the spine is supported with the back muscles. As our center of body falls slightly ahead of spine; also helps in maintaining the posture during movements.Many factors contribute either individually or together to cause back pain. The pain can range from a dull pain to a sudden shooting sensation. Pain can be abrupt due to activity- lifting heavy weight, twisting activity or can be developed overtime - due to degeneration of bones, weak muscles, muscle spasm, nerve compression. Sedentary lifestyle plays a major role in increasing the pressure at the intervertebral disc, changing spine curvatures leading to Muscle imbalance within the low back and lower limbs. There are cases of latent injury where a person bends down to pick a fallen object from ground and the back gives off.
Early addressing the pain and taking proper measures can help to prevent problem from developing and the need for medication and surgery. Pain can be managed by applyingice packs or heat packs; ice packs are beneficial to use immediately after an injury or strain. Heat packs also gives you relief from stiff or aching muscles. Wearing of braces or lumbar support belts during unbearable pain helps to give support and reduce the pain, but avoid wearing it whole day long as it weakens the muscles which provide stability hence reducing the core strength. It is difficult to move around with the pain, but it's better to take a walk because resting can make your muscles more hard or stiff. Strengthening the core muscles and improving the flexibility of joint to prevent the occurrence of pain and discomfort. Maintaining a good posture making some ergonomic changes at work station can be beneficial for the long-term effect.
Back pain is also often seen with problems like stress,depression and anxiety; help you with daily meditation and deep breathing exercises to get relief from it. Some recent studies show that smoking not only just damage your lungs but also has a systemic effect of weakening the back muscles. It says that chronic smokers are likely to have back pain compared to people who have never smoked; nicotine content in it causes the small blood vessels to constrict and decrease the blood supply to soft tissues.
In every low back condition diagnosing the exact cause is important. Complete medical history and physical examination leads to the diagnosis and helps to create the exercise program. Exercise program can differ from patient to patient as per the condition. The low back pain can be prevented by doing low impact exercises after every prolong inactivity. Simple stretches, simple movements such as range of motion exercises will help to prevent the low back pain.
Dr.Pradnya Pansare (PT)