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Back Pain
    My Health Report
  • on Oct 18, 2017 |
Back Pain
Back pain is one of the most common reasons why people go to the doctor or miss work. It is a leading cause of disability worldwide. Most all people have back pain at least once in their lives. Fortunately, you can take measures to prevent or relieve most back pain. If prevention fails, simple home treatment and proper body mechanics often will heal your back within a few weeks and keep it functional for the long haul. Surgery is rarely needed to treat back pain.
Signs and symptoms of back pain include:
Muscle aches
Shooting or stabbing pain
Pain that radiates down your leg
Limited flexibility or range of motion of the back
Most back pain will gradually improve with home treatment, if not than you should consult your doctor. In rare cases, back pain can signal a serious medical problem.
Seek medical care immediately if your back pain:
Follows a fall, blow to your back or other injury
Causes new bowel or bladder problems
Is accomplished by fever
Is severe and does not improve with rest
Causes weakness, numbness, or tingling in one or both legs
Is accompanied by unexplained weight loss
Spreads down both legs, especially If the pain extends below the knee
You should also consult your doctor if you start having back pain for the first time after the age of 50, or if you have a history of cancer, osteoporosis, Steroid use, or abuse drugs or alcohol.
Back pain often develops without a specific cause that your doctor can identify with a test or imaging study. Conditions commonly linked to back pain include muscle or ligament strain, bulging or ruptured disks, arthritis, skeletal irregularities, or osteoporosis.
Anyone can develop back pain, even children and teens. Research has yet to prove what contributes to back pain. However, risk factors might put you at greater risk of developing back pain are age, lack of exercise, excess weight, diseases, improper lifting, psychological conditions, and even smoking.
Most acute back pain (back pain lasting less than 6 weeks) gets better with a few weeks of home treatment. Over-the-counter pain relievers and the use of heat or ice might be all you need. Bed rest isn't recommended. Continue with your normal activities as much as you can tolerate but stop activities that increase pain. If home treatments are not working after several weeks then your doctor might suggest other options such as stronger medications, physical therapy, and in rare cases surgery. 
Alternative medicine is also a good option to relieve back pain. You can try a chiropractor, massage therapist, acupuncture, and yoga to help calm the muscles and nerves in your back.
You may be able to avoid back pain or prevent its recurrence by improving your physical condition and learning and practicing proper body mechanics.
To help keep your back healthy and strong, here are some tips:
Build muscle strength and flexibility in your back
Maintain a healthy weight
Maintain good posture while standing, sitting, and lifting objects