Nearly 3 out of every 10 U.S. adults suffer from chronic low back pain. Chronic lower back pain can significantly reduce your quality of life, and force you to modify your life around your pain symptoms. Unfortunately, finding a long-term solution to safely and effectively treat your chronic lower back pain is easier said than done. This is because oftentimes it can be difficult to understand the underlying condition causing your back pain in the first place.
Understanding the cause behind your chronic lower back pain can be extremely helpful when it comes to seeking the right treatment to best treat your pain. If you’ve been struggling with chronic lower back pain, read on to learn more about the common causes that may be behind your pain.
- Herniated Discs
Herniated discs, otherwise known as bulging discs, occur when a disc in your spine “spills out” of its lining. The adult spine is made up of about 17 vertebrae stacked on top of each other and separated by a cushion-like disc which helps absorb pressure placed on the different vertebrae so the bones aren’t pushed up against one another.
Some people who’ve experienced physical external trauma or age-related wear and tear may cause one of their discs to spill out of its lining and cause pressure on surrounding nerves, which inevitably results in pain and discomfort.
- Back Injuries
Back injuries are another common cause of lower back pain. Back injuries can encompass a wide range of circumstances from sudden and traumatic causes like a car accident, a severe fall, or other external traumatic events. Or, back injuries can be gradual and happen over time due to improper form or posture. For example, if your job requires you to lift and pick up heavy objects routinely, improper form can cause you over time to develop a back injury and thus result in lower back pain.
The spine has a natural curvature that resembles that of “S” from the side, meaning your upper back should curve backward while your lower back curves more forward. However, some people may develop a spinal deformity where their spine curves sideways and thus has an unnatural curvature to it, otherwise known as scoliosis. Typically, people with scoliosis only have a minor form of it that doesn’t require much pain or need any treatment. However, some people in severe cases may experience significant stress and lower back pain from their scoliosis.
- Arthritis of the Spine
Everyone experiences daily wear and tear on their spine from engaging in everyday activities. Unfortunately, this wear and tear adds up over time and can result in arthritis of the spine. As we age, we experience an accumulation of wear and tear on our spine. This causes the cartilage between our spinal joints to break down with time, which then causes the surrounding tissues to become inflamed. Therefore, the combination of this with the thinning of the cartilage results in increased friction of your spinal joints, causing chronic lower back pain.
Find a specialist that specializes in treating individuals with chronic back pain, providing minimally invasive treatments and referrals to outside services such as physical therapy, and chiropractic care.
The SpineAlign Team