What Causes Backache? Symptoms and Prevention

Backache- A Spoiler:

An aching back can put a hindrance to all your tasks of the day. Imagine having an aching in the middle of an important presentation or during a family function. It can ruin all your plans. Here is a gist of what all can cause back pain so that next time you can take measures to avoid it. Let us first look at the symptoms of back ache.

Symptoms of backache:

  • Muscular pain and ache in the region of your back as well as lower back
  • Shooting or stabbing pain in the back
  • Pain that travels from your back towards your leg in the downward direction
  • Pain that makes bending, walking and sitting more difficult and also increases because of the normal day to day activities
  • An aching back is one which feels relieved once you recline.

Causes of Backache:

1. Muscle or Ligament Strain:

When you repeat lifting of heavy weights it may cause the muscles of your back to strain. A sudden and unusual movement can also lead to straining of the ligament of your back. If you have a poor physical condition, straining your back can cause muscle spasm.

2.  Bulging or ruptured Disks:

The disks between your vertebrae act as a cushion. They provide a support system to your back. The disk is made of soft material that can either bulge or rupture. This may cause the nerve around this area to press. This may lead to excruciating back pain. Disk disease is found in an x-ray examination.

3. Arthritis causing back pain:

Osteoarthritis can often affect the lower back. Arthritis in the spine can cause the space around the spinal cord to become narrow. This condition is called spinal stenosis. This too can cause back pain to most people.

4. Osteoporosis:

Osteoporosis is a condition in which the bones become brittle. This happens due to lack of calcium. Your spine’s vertebrae can develop compression fractures if you have osteoporosis.

5. Spinal Stenosis:

This is a medical condition in which your spinal canal becomes narrow. It causes pressure on the spine and nerves that causes pain in the back. This usually happens to people of older age.

6. Spondylolisthesis:

A bone in the spine slips forward and leaves its place. This usually happens in the lower back. The degenerative form of this problem is called arthritis. In arthritis the joints and ligaments become weak thus putting a pressure on your spine and causing a back ache.

7. Accidents and Injuries:

Due to accidents one may suffer injuries in the back. This leads to muscles pains, strains and often fractures. Often pain happens due to muscles spasms as well.

8. Mode of Delivery:

If a woman delivers through cesarean section, the doctor administers anesthesia in the lower back region. Often due to this injection, pain persists in the mother’s back for a very long time. However if after delivery, due care is taken, the pain does not last for a very long time.

9. Spasms as causes of back ache:

When the muscles and tendons break due to pressure on your back, it can cause pain in your back. This usually happens due to weightlifting and intense gyming and exercise.

10. Lifestyle Triggers:

Back pain can also be caused due to the day to day things you do. They may be caused due to improper posture like slouching, lifting heavy objects, being overweight, lack of exercise, smoking and wearing heels. Avoiding these could help you prevent your back from aching.

11. Tumors causing back ache:

Sometimes, cancerous cells that develop at a different place in the body spread to other parts of your body including your back. As a result, you may feel pain and aches in your back. This is a very rare condition and does not necessarily happen to all people suffering from cancer.

12. Kidney Stone:

Patients who have kidney stone problem feel excruciating pain in the back when the stones get stuck. This pain strikes the lower back and spreads to the lower abdominal region.

13. Fractures:

If you fall or have osteoporosis, you may cause yourself a fracture in the spine. This leads to back pain that takes a lot of time to heal. Fractured spines take longer to heal if it happens in old age. An injury due to accident could lead to back problems.

14. Lack of Exercise:

Exercising is good for your health because it strengthens your muscles and provides them with flexibility. If you do not exercise, you are at a greater risk of back related medical problems and also muscular spasms and tears. To avoid these, you must exercise regularly and prepare your body for all situations.

15. Psychological Condition:

People who are depressed and suffer from anxiety have an aching back too. They may feel gloomy and inactive all day which may thus cause an aching back.

Preventing Backache:

1 Exercise: 

It is important to exercise to keep your body flexible. In situations where you have to pick weights and perform activities that could otherwise strain your back, exercising can prevent the same. Performing yoga asanas to which involve exercises that stretch your muscles could help you provide strength and support to your back muscles. Ask your physiotherapist to suggest you exercise to dodge an aching back.

2. Maintain a Healthy Weight:

Increased weight could exert pressure on your back thus being responsible for backache. Eat right, stay fit and keep a check on weight gain. Your weight shall decide how much trouble your back can cause to you. Eat food items that include fiber to keep a check on your weight and accelerate your metabolism. Hit the gym to shed off the extra kilos. Drink tea that could help you lose weight.

3. Quit Smoking:

Whether it be to avoid back ache or due to cancer or respiratory diseases, you will have to quit smoking some day. You better d it earlier than later when you are stuck with life threatening and fatal disease.

4. Stand Properly:

Do not droop your shoulders while you stand. Stand erect. You will notice doing simple things like these can elevate pain from your back.

5. Sit straight:

Slouching while sitting is a major cause of back ache. You must pay attention to your sitting style. People working on computers often develop a habit of slouching while they work. Make a conscious effort to sit straight, use support if needed.

6. Avoid lifting Weight:

Avoid weight lifting if your back is troublesome. Keep your back straight — no twisting — and bend only at the knees. Hold the load close to your body. Find a lifting partner if the object is heavy or awkward.

A lot of over the counter medicines are available to heal your back pain. All of these are temporary solutions. One must ensure that medications are taken only on prescription issued by a medical practitioner. Such over the counter drugs could be damaging to your health. A lot of bets are also sold in the market claiming to relieve your back ache. Do not trust them blindly. Take advice from your doctor before you proceed to invest in any such product. Application of balms and pain relieving tubes can give you temporary rest and are also not harmful. There is no shortcut to any problem and one must adapt the to the measures stated above to prevent a back ache.

Shabnam Vandeliwala

Venturing into writing is my second most admired hobby after litigating in courts. An advocate by profession, writing gives me immense sense of satisfaction especially in the time that I'm free from other work.

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