If you live with lower back pain, you have a lot of company. Millions of Americans deal with acute lower back pain, and, unfortunately, this pain becomes chronic for many people. Back pain and the conditions that cause it are common, especially among older adults. It’s important to familiarize yourself with the most common causes, even if you don’t think you’re at risk. And if you already experience issues, you may be familiar with some of the conditions on this list. Back pain can affect anyone, so you should learn about the most likely culprits.
Injuries or Strains to Back Muscles
Injuries and strains are some of the most common sources of back pain in people of all ages. Repeated heavy lifting, sports accidents, poor posture, and a lack of exercise are all causes. Depending on the level of severity, most back pain stemming from injuries can improve with physical therapy. Find a doctor or back pain specialist who can help you manage your symptoms.
Issues With Spinal Discs
There are many conditions that can affect your spinal discs, causing varying levels of back pain. Degenerative disc disease can cause bulging or ruptured discs, which are common causes of back pain. Due to injuries or age, the discs in your spine can begin to break down, which causes pain due to pressed nerves. There are various dos and don’ts of living with degenerative disc disease, including knowing when to seek treatment for your pain.
Another age-related cause of back issues is osteoporosis, which causes the bones to become more brittle due to the loss of tissue as well as vitamin deficiencies. Taking the appropriate vitamin supplements (discuss with your doctor) and eating healthy meals can prevent osteoporosis at any age, especially if you know you’re at risk of developing osteoporosis.
Spinal arthritis is another common cause of back pain. This condition can also come with age and is especially common in older adults. Early signs of spinal arthritis can include stiffness, swelling, tenderness, and more. Consult your doctor or specialist if you begin to experience any of these symptoms.
The connection between your feet and your lower back pain may not seem immediately obvious. Most of us who sit in front of a computer or stare at small screens most of the day are struggling with biomechanical issues. Shortened quad muscles from sitting all day, flat feet, poor gait, plantar fasciitis, and poor choices of footwear can cause pain issues.
Steps to Take
Understanding the causes of back pain can be instrumental in effectively managing and finding relief from this common ailment. Among the factors discussed, foot issues, osteoporosis, and arthritis have emerged as significant contributors to back pain. It is crucial to address any foot abnormalities or imbalances, as they can create a chain reaction of misalignment and strain on the back. Additionally, taking proactive measures to prevent and treat osteoporosis, such as maintaining a healthy diet and engaging in weight-bearing exercises, can help strengthen the bones and reduce the risk of fractures that often lead to back pain.
Furthermore, managing arthritis through a combination of medication, physical therapy, and lifestyle modifications can alleviate the inflammation and joint pain that frequently radiate to the back. By recognizing and addressing these underlying causes, individuals can empower themselves to take control of their back health and live a more comfortable and active life. Remember, seeking professional medical advice is essential for an accurate diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.
Dianne Pajo is a Certified Personal Trainer based out of the Chicagoland area with a passion for music, combat sports, and animals. She enjoys competing in amateur boxing and kickboxing, but in her other leisure time, you can find her outdoors and performing music around the city. She is also a dog mom of 2.