Lower back pain usually refers to an ache, muscle tension, stiffness or numbness in the lower part of the back. (1:3, 4) It is extremely common but can also be extremely painful. (2:1, 2, 12) Because the back is made up of so many different elements-muscles, tendons, nerves, joints and spinal discs-it can be difficult to find out exactly what is causing the lower back pain. (2:5) Pain can be caused by a muscle ligament strain, (1:4) a sprain or damage to the discs in between the vertebra (3:2) or due to a problem in another organ, such as kidney disease or bladder infections. (2:7)
Based on your submission, we recommend you consult a medical practitioner.
A sprain, strain or spasm of the ligaments in the back is the most common cause of back pain. (1:4, 5) This
can happen from bad posture (5:4) or if you lift something heavy, placing strain on your lower back. If
the spine becomes overly strained or compressed, a disc from in between the vertebra can slip outwards.
This can irritate the nerves that are rooted to the spinal cord, pain. (5:3,5,7)
Mostly, pain in the lower back is due to a specific trauma to the back. But it also may be due to arthritis, osteoporosis or other bone diseases. (1:1) (5:3)
Try to treat lower back pain as soon as possible after the trauma. Applying a cooling pack to the
area for 20 minutes, several times a day may help. After two or three days of cold treatment,
apply a heat pack or pad to the area for a few minutes a day, to relax the muscles. (2:9)
Bed rest is not necessary. Light activities may help improve flexibility in the back sooner. (2:10) (5:11:12)
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDs) can help to alleviate some of the pain. (2:8)
Ask your doctor or pharmacist about non-steroidal anti-inflammatory patches that can be placed on the painful area.
Regular exercise is the best way to avoid future lower back pain.
Strengthening the muscles in your back, hips and legs and your core
abdominal muscles can help. Aim to do some anaerobic training (core muscle strengthening)
as often as possible, But, ask your doctor before starting any strenuous exercise. (2:11)
Lifting objects correctly, will help to prevent possible back injuries. The knee should be bent enough that the arms are level with the object lifted. The legs, not the back, should be used to lift. Heavy objects should rather be carried close to the body. (5:10)
Adjust your office chair. Sit with your back straight and your feet flat on a footrest. Avoid sitting for long periods, and take regular breaks to stretch your back muscles. (5:9)
The lower back, or lumbar area, helps with structural support and movement (5:2).
It supports the upper body when
standing, and it is involved in the movement when we bend, stretch forward or rotate at the waist. It’s no wonder,
then, that it can be damaged easily. Pain in the lower back can feel dull and constant or sharp and intermittent,
depending on what is causing it. (5:6) (6:1,2)
Severe pain usually lasts 48 to 72 hours and may be followed by days or weeks of diminishing pain. (6:3) If the pain lasts for longer than 6 weeks, it is classified as chronic pain. (4:2) Often, strengthening the muscles in your back by doing regular exercise can ease lower back pain. (6:4)