What Causes Lower Back Pain – And What Can You Do About It?

September 3, 2008 by admin 

About 80 percent of the population experiences back pain, frequently lower back pain, at some point in time. Since this is a problem which affects nearly everyone, it is important to know what the causes of lower back pain are. You also need to know how to control these factors to keep lower back pain to a minimum.

Causes of Lower Back Pain

As we age, we lose a lot of our body’s natural muscle tone and elasticity. We also tend to lose bone strength as we age. Our spinal discs lose flexibility due to the loss of fluid. This means that they do a less effective job of protecting the vertebrae. Just the fact of getting older can play a part in experiencing lower back pain.

A strain, sprain or spasm in your muscles or ligaments can result in the rupture of a spinal disc. This leads to increased pressure on your spinal cord nerves. Your back will let you know about this through neural signs, more commonly known as pain. What are the causes of these strains, sprains and spasms? Generally these are injuries which are caused by trying to lift heavy weights or overextending muscles.

Ailments such as arthritis or osteoporosis can also lead to lower back pain. Other causes include disc or joint irritation, viral infections, or spinal abnormalities.

Lifestyle factors can also be contributors to lower back pain. This includes smoking, being overweight, pregnancy, stress, bad posture and being in poor shape. Hip pain and lower back pain sometimes come as a distressing package deal. Another cause of lower back pain can be scar tissue from old injuries – this can also lead to further, more critical injuries.

When to Worry About Lower Back Pain

You should take your lower back pain seriously if it comes along with other symptoms. Watch out for weakness in the muscles, particularly in the legs, loss of bowel or bladder control, fever or coughing. If your lower back pain is accompanied by these symptoms, contact your physician immediately. They may indicate a pinched nerve or other underlying problem. If you suffer from diabetes, your back pain might be related to neuropathy.

Avoiding Lower Back Pain

By taking good care of your back in daily life, most lower back pain can be avoided. Poor posture is often the root cause of lower back pain that never quite goes away. There are ways to change this. Try exercises to build up strength in your lower back, stand up straight, and don’t forget to use your legs to lift objects instead of your back. Make sure to follow proper ergonomic procedures during your workday. This can go a long way towards preventing lower back pain.


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