Back pain is one of the most common conditions among the human race. And, it can also be one of the most debilitating because the back is so important for mobility.
This is the reason that many personal fitness trainers advocate doing regular back strengthening exercises and to work the core, because it is integral to overall health and body strength, especially as we age.
Back pain can be indicative of a variety of conditions that can range from being benign to very serious. Most people who experience back pain take medication to relieve the pain and go about their business, but they do not realize that stopping the pain is not stopping the problem. Due to the uncertainty of this type of pain it is important to explore all the potential causes for it.
Many conditions present themselves with other symptoms alongside back pain, making it a little easier to decipher between them.
If you have been struggling with constant back pain, it is important to understand the different types of back pain and the symptoms they bring so that you and your doctor can move forward with effective treatment plans.
Types of Back Pain and Symptoms
The back is one of the largest areas of the body because it takes up a lot of surface area. Due to the size of this body part, there is a lot of potential for pain, discomfort and other problems to arise. The back is also a sensitive area because of the nerve endings and vertebrae located in the spine. These highly sensitive parts and organs are prone to damage and strain, making them the prime area for pain to manifest when there is a problem. Also due to the size of the back, there can be pain all over—from the upper shoulders and neck, to the center, to the lower back, you can experience back pain virtually anywhere.
While not all back pain is the same, the more in touch with your body you are, the more likely you are to identify one hurt from another. For example, back pain from the menstrual cycle is extremely different from the pain one feels from a sprain. This is because the various muscles and nerves respond differently to different cause of pain. The most common types of back pain are the following:
• Upper Back Pain
• Lower Back Pain
• Middle Back Pin
• Upper, Middle, and Lower Back Strain
• Lower Back, Leg, and Hip Pain
• Nighttime Pain
• Sprain or Strain Pain
Many people experience these forms of back pain on a daily basis. While they are common, that does not mean they are not cause for alarm. There are certain accompanying symptoms that may indicate the need to visit your doctor. The following complications may require medical attention and include back pain as part of their common symptoms:
• Sciatica: This condition occurs when pressure is placed on the sciatic nerve located in the leg or upper thigh. The sciatic nerve can cause both back and leg pain if it is subjected to too much pressure. This can happen when a person is overweight or even underweight because the nerve will be exposed to either a lot of extra pressure or friction respectively.
• Cuada Equina Syndrome: This syndrome can negatively affect the bowels and bladder and may even lead to paralysis. When out of hand, this condition could also require emergency surgery as to avoid any lasting damage to the abdominal area.
• Hernia/Herniated Disk: A hernia occurs when the abdominal tissue “falls” out of place, usually due to heavy lifting or excess strain. While this mostly affects men, it has the potential to affect women as well, especially if the condition is hereditary. When a hernia occurs it could cause serious lower back pain that will almost definitely require immediate medical attention.
Play It Safe
If you have persistent back pain it is best to put the painkillers away and pick up the phone. Your doctor can perform a thorough examination and assess your unique back pain. Do not wait until your pain has gotten out of hand. Play it safe and contact your medical care provider as soon as possible.