Back Pain - What Causes Spine Pain & What You Can Do To Feel Better
Back pain is one of the most widespread health issues faced by people all over the United States. As a matter of fact, it's estimated that 80 percent of Americans experience back and/or neck pain at some point in their lives. Often, the pain is caused by something relatively minor like a strained muscle or sprained ligament, and symptoms last for a few days. A doctor's visit is rarely necessary for this type of back pain, as most people can find relief with over-the-counter pain medication, ice packs, and hot compresses.
Occasionally, however, there is a more serious problem behind back pain, causing symptoms to last weeks, months, or even years. Whenever back or neck pain persists for more than a week, patients should make an appointment to see their physician to receive a proper diagnosis.
Like any other type of pain, there are a multitude of possible diseases, conditions, or injuries that can cause back pain. However, if your back or neck pain is accompanied by weakness, numbness, tingling, and pain that travels to other areas of the body such as the shoulders, arms, hands, pelvis, buttocks, legs, or feet, then it's quite possible a degenerative spinal condition is at the root of your symptoms.
Examples of degenerative spinal conditions include:
While the above spinal conditions are relatively common, that doesn't mean they're easy to diagnose, treat, or endure. Some individuals find themselves disabled by a herniated disc, spinal bone spur, or spinal osteoarthritis, leaving them unable to work, travel, or even lie down and rest without pain.
Thanks to recent advances in the treatment of back pain, there are many effective options available to liberate people from their discomfort. As a matter of fact, the vast majority of back pain sufferers are able to ease their pain by using some combination of nonsurgical techniques like medication, physical therapy, gentle stretching, exercise, hot/cold compresses, and epidural steroid injections while the spinal condition heals on its own over several months.
For more information about degenerative spinal conditions, their causes, and possible treatment options, visit the other pages in this section.