Back pain: Prevention and treatment

Back pain is a physical discomfort occurring anywhere in the spine or back as a result of injury, physical activity or some medical conditions.

Back pain: Prevention and treatment

There are two types of back pain which are:

Acute back pain: This is a sharp pain that only lasts for a few days or weeks, often as a result of an accident or lifting something heavy.

Chronic back pain: This is a constant sharp pain that lasts for more than three months. Chronic back pain is mostly age-related, but it can also be caused by injury.

Symptoms of back pain include:

  • muscle aching
  • inability to stand straight without pain
  • decreased back reflex ability
  • weakness in both or one leg

Here are some of the ways you can prevent back pain:

1) Avoid lifting heavy objects:

Lifting heavy objects like heavy bags, suitcases, and laptops can cause discomfort in the back. Instead of carrying heavy objects, you can reduce the number of items you need to carry by dividing them into smaller bags.

2) Improve your posture:

Poor posture can lead to back pain. Work on improving your posture. Exercise and yoga can help improve your posture.

3) Maintain a healthy weight:

Obesity or being overweight can cause back pain. Getting regular exercise and eating healthy food can help you maintain a healthy weight.

4) Avoid wearing high heels regularly:

Wearing high heels can make your back ache along with your feet and can also give your body bad posture. You can always wear a more comfortable shoe instead of wearing high-heeled shoes.

5) Exercise the body often:

Exercise keeps the body in shape and it also makes the body more flexible. Regular exercise can help prevent back pain.

Treatments for back pain:

1) Medications:

Medications are very effective for treating back pain. Some of these medications include:

  • Topical pain relievers: Topical pain relievers are ointments, creams, and salves that help relieve pain.
  • Over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers: These include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium.
  • Antidepressants
  • Narcotics

2) Physical Therapy:

Physical therapy helps decrease back pain through exercises and modalities like heat/ice packs and ultrasound. It usually lasts for six to eight weeks.

3) Surgery:

Some back pains don't respond to treatments or physical therapy. Back surgery is used to cure such back pain. Although surgery often helps relieve the pain, most of the time it's not advisable that you go for surgery.

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