While for some people back pain is little more than discomfort, for others it can leave them incapacitated.
While some cases of back pain originate from injury, accidents or organic medical conditions such as arthritis or fracture, the most common cause of back pain is stress to the joints and muscles of the back and irritation of the spinal nerves caused by misalignments of the vertebra (subluxations) which accumulates from day-to-day activities, such as:
- poor posture
- incorrect bending and lifting procedures
- sitting down for extended periods of time
- sleeping incorrectly
- twisting the body into an uncomfortable position
Mid Back Pain
Mid back pain is a kind of pain felt in the area below the neck and above the waist or lower back. The middle back is composed of 12 vertebrae which are part of the thoracic section of the spine. The middle back is naturally strong and stable as it is connected to the rib cage. The elastic cartilages which are found between each bone serve as shock absorbers and also, there are muscles and tendons that provide stability to the back.
There are many different problems that could trigger mid back pain. Causes of pain in the middle back include:
- Poor posture
- Emotional stress
- Improper lifting
- Accidental trauma
- Tightening of the diaphragm
- Standing for hours
- Sleeping uncomfortably
- Muscle strains
If the middle part of the spine is directly injured, it can cause malfunction to occur from the pinched nerves to blood sugar-controlling organs. Within that spinal region, there are pairs of spinal nerves emitting from the middle back to various digestive parts which includes stomach, liver, gall bladder, and small intestine. Problems in communication with the nerves may lead to numerous digestive disorders. There are also nerves in the middle back that leads to the heart which can bring heart irregularities.
The Chiropractor will take a thorough history and provide a physical exam. After the assessment, the Chiropractor will develop a plan to correct the underlying problems. Additional services Chiropractors provide include exercises, pelvic stabilization, ergonomics, and patient education. Exercise and rehabilitation are very important to prevent the pain from becoming chronic.
Low back pain
The lower back area supports most of our body weight and, as a consequence, relies heavily on the strength of the vertebrae in our spine. To have these vertebrae out of position for even a short period of time can lead to anything from mild discomfort to severe disablement. If the spine is not in correct alignment, areas of weakness can occur, resulting in irritation of nerves in the spine, or in a bulging disc, which places pressure on the spinal cord.
Pain is a warning from the brain that something within the structure of the skeleton (or the brain) is not functioning as it should. Through chiropractic care the appropriate adjustment is carefully applied depending on the location and type of pain. It is worth remembering that even though pain can subside within a few days it may still be symptomatic of an underlying condition and should be checked by a qualified health professional without delay.
Masking the symptoms (pain) of lower back problems doesn’t solve the real problem – that of ‘what has caused the pain to appear in the first place’? Treating the symptoms should only ever be a very short-term measure to diminish the pain and to make you more comfortable until you can get the cause addressed.
On the positive side…and until you are checked by a professional chiropractor or health care provider, here are a few things you can do and questions to ask yourself in order to help prevent lower back pain.
- Avoid sudden bending, twisting or sharp movement
- Check that you are adopting a correct posture during the day
- How is your posture while sitting at work? Is your spine curved or (relatively) straight? (This includes things like a supportive chair, a well-placed computer monitor and a workstation layout that does not require a lot of twisting and turning)
- How firm is the mattress on your bed?
- Do you get regular exercise? Even a low-impact exercise such as walking for a half hour each day will loosen muscles in the back and thus keep them active
- Don’t take to your bed – this is the least likely treatment to get rid of your lower back pain
- Don’t wear shoes with high heels
- Do wear comfortable flat or low-heeled shoes