April 11, 2019
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What are the chances that you are hunched over your computer, or sitting in a train, bus or cab, with your neck bent down and poring over your hand held device as you’re reading this article, and there’s a pain in your neck, middle or lower back? No surprise there, as back pain is now almost synonymous with our modern urban lifestyles. But what is surprising is how ignored it is, given the fact that studies on low back pain in India cite an alarming fact of at least 60% or more having suffered from it at least once in their lifetime. In fact studies reveal that low back pain is the 2nd most prevalent cause of disability in the US and in light of this, the 2nd largest cause of absence from work in the US (not so surprisingly).
The spinal column provides our bodies with the mobility and support we need to stand, walk and be flexible in our movements. How does this spinal column consisting of a stack of 24 bones called the vertebrae give us so much freedom and yet be so debilitating? Let’s examine some of the ways that our backs hurt and cause pain.
Muscle strain – when the muscles surrounding the spine are stretched beyond normal, like lifting or pushing something heavy, or lifting things carelessly, then the back cries out in pain.
Posture –possibly the most common cause because a large number of us don’t sit, stand or walk in the way we were meant to. We slouch when we walk, or hunch up our shoulders while working, or even the way we sit in our cars while driving, all of this can have a direct impact on how our back feels.
Accidents – back pain resulting after a serious accident, injuries from a fall, (a fall in the bathroom for instance can be quite grievous), sports injuries caused during practice, constant strain on the back due to repetitive movement like too many gym reps, or some awkward movement like the way we sleep, can cause our back to hurt.
Illness – Osteoporosis leading to the brittleness of the bones, especially common among women, can lead to back pain. Arthritis or a pinched nerve like sciatica or a slipped disc can also be attributed to the cause of back pain.
Any kind of back pain, if left unattended for too long, can be painful and crippling. There are a few things you can do to prevent back pain.
Don’t be spineless when it comes to back pain. Take preventive action and in case pain persists then don’t wait, consult a neurologist or a spine specialist.
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