Chiropractic Tips: Causes of Chronic Back Pain

January 09 | drsingh

Chronic Back Pain is more common than you think, sitting at your desk or overstraining your back can lead chronic back pain.

Lower back pain is a common complaint.

Unless you’ve experienced an injury, though—twisting the wrong way playing a sport, lifting something heavy with poor form, or getting hurt in an accident—the discomfort may come on so gradually that you’re not quite sure what’s causing it. Your lower spine is critical for supporting the weight of your upper body as well as being central to all kinds of everyday movements, such as walking, bending, and twisting. When something is wrong in your lower back, you can’t help but feel it no matter what you do.

Typical lower back pain symptoms include a dull ache in your hips or pelvis, sharp tingling pain that shoots down your leg from your lower back (sciatica), muscle tightness or spasms, pain that gets worse when you’re sitting down but improves when you walk around, or pain that is significantly worse in the morning. It’s not unusual for back pain to vary in intensity, seeming to improve and then flare back up, but if you have an unresolved underlying problem, it will gradually get worse over time.

Sometimes back pain can be the result of a minor sprain or strain from overuse. In those cases, simple self-care, such as icing the affected area, taking over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication, and avoiding strenuous activity may alleviate the pain. If your pain continues despite these measures, though, one of the following causes may be to blame.

Common Reasons for Chronic Back Pain

Persistent lower back pain can signal that there is an underlying problem with your lumbar disks, vertebrae, joints, or nerves. Some issues develop as a result of wear and tear, while others can be the result of trauma.

Herniated disk: Between each set of vertebrae in your spine is a disk that acts as a buffer between the two bones. These disks have tough outer layer that contains a soft gel center. If the inner gel of one of your lumbar disks slips through a crack in the outer layer, it can press on adjacent nerves and cause pain.

Spinal stenosis: This narrowing of the spinal canal in your lower back may be caused by a bone spur, a thickened ligament, or a degenerating lumbar disk or joint. This puts pressure on nearby nerve roots that can be quite painful, as well as potentially causing sciatica.

Facet joint damage: The joints that connect the five vertebrae of your lower back are called facet joints. Because these joints are under a large amount of compressive force and stress, the cartilage can break down over time, leading to inflammation, pain, stiffness, and muscle spasms.

Compression fracture: A spinal compression fracture, when a vertebra collapses in on itself, can be caused by osteoporosis as well as by injury. The pain can be sudden and severe, and the fracture often results in limited spinal mobility.

Spondylolisthesis: This condition occurs when one of your lower vertebrae slips forward over the vertebra below it. This puts extra force on the lumbar disk between them. In addition to being painful, over time this may flatten the lumbar disk, leading to nerve compression and sciatica.

Scoliosis: The spine has a natural curve forward and back—the upper spine curves back while your lower spine curves forward. Scoliosis, a sideways curve, is a deformity that may cause back pain. If severe, the improper curvature puts stress on the lower back that can increase the likelihood that lumbar joints and disks will degenerate.

Chiropractic Care: An Effective Treatment for Chronic Lower Back Pain

To regain your mobility and resolve your back pain, you must identify the root cause of the problem. At Singh Rehabilitation, a chiropractor in Anaheim Hills, every treatment plan begins with a comprehensive examination to determine the source of your pain. From there, we create an individualized course of therapy to address your specific needs. Our unique combination of physiotherapy and chiropractic treatment helps eliminate pain while restoring function, flexibility, stability, and strength. If you’re ready to get to the bottom of your chronic back pain, contact us here to learn more about our treatment options or to schedule an initial consultation.

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