Back pain hurts, whether it’s chronic or not. But it is important to distinguish the difference between chronic pain and temporary pain. Lacing up the old basketball shoes can leave you lying on the floor with an ice pack the following day. Muscle soreness is normal if you partake in an activity that your body is not regularly used to. Moving, mowing the lawn, wrestling with the kids, are responsible for a lot of sore backs. This type of infrequent pain is ok, even though it still down right HURTS!
Chronic pain, meaning pain that occurs for long periods of time or occurs frequently is cause for more concern. Though it is ok to feel soreness if you spend a lot of time doing one particular thing, severe pain often means the body is trying to tell you something. The cause of chronic back pain varies, depending on the part of the back, and the person experiencing the pain. If you have chronic neck pain and you spend hours in front of a computer, it is likely that the muscles in your upper back and neck are tight, sore and tense.
There’s no way to give a blanket answer to why so many people have back pain. However, if you were to analyze the numbers closely you will see that many people can attribute their pain to one of the following:
Trauma or Injury – This is self explanatory. Any major impact to the back can cause mild to severe pain.
Muscle Strains – Even a slight muscle strain can bring you to your knees in pain. Muscle strains are common amongst athletes.
Muscle Imbalances – One of the most underrated causes of pain. Tight and weak muscles cause the body to be out of alignment, thus leading to pain.
Postural Dysfunctions – Another common cause of all types of back pain
Disc Deteriorations – One of the most common conditions that cause pain. Things like bulging or herniated discs happen over time as the discs between the vertebra begin to wear.
Nerve Damage – Damage or pressure on the nerve can be very painful and often difficult to diagnose.
This of course is not a complete list of back pain causes. Other things like genetics and inflammation also play a role in back pain. If you are unsure of what is causing your pain, you can begin researching the items listed above. Once you have identified the causes of your pain, you can begin to treat it.
If you are unsure, you can consult your physician. Just keep in mind, they may not be experts in back pain and may not know as much as you would think. Many people are prescribed pain killers as a way of treating back pain. Unfortunately, this method of treatment only addresses the symptoms of pain, not the actual causes.