What Causes Lower Back Pain?
Lower back pain can be defined as pain in your lumbar spine. The causes of low back pain can be complex including accidents, sports injuries and muscle strains. There are two types of lower back pain, mechanical and compressive.
Mechanical pain is related to the movement of your spine and is often called a back strain. This is the result of an injury to the discs, facet joints, muscles or ligaments of the spine. Many conditions of the spine can cause this type of pain including vertebral fractures, muscle strains, ligament injuries and everyday wear and tear of your spine’s discs and joints.
Compressive pain results from irritation or pressure on your spinal cord or the nerves of the spine. A common cause of this type of pain is the rupture of your lumbar intervertebral disc, also known as a herniated disc. Your lumbar vertebrae are the strongest and are located in your lower back between your hips and chest.
Some common conditions that may cause lower back pain after an injury include:
- Sciatica – Pain and tenderness along the sciatic nerve causing pain to be felt from the hip down the back of the thigh. Typically caused by a herniated or bulging disc.
- Herniated or Bulging Discs – Your discs act as a cushion of support for your vertebrae. Overuse or an injury to this area can cause them to slip out of place or even rupture, causing a herniated disc.
- Strains or Sprains – Both conditions can result from overstretching, sudden movements, twisting or poor body mechanics while lifting. A strain is a tear in your muscle or tendon and a sprain is the result of overstretching or tearing of your ligaments.
- Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction – Sacroiliac joint pain can be caused from the impact of a car accident or too much or too little movement. It is caused by pain in the sacroiliac joint which connects the sacrum and pelvis.
- Stress Fractures – These fractures of the lower back are caused by overuse and are often seen in athletes or sportsmen. This condition is also called spondylolysis.
- Facet Joint Syndrome – This condition can be caused by an injury related to sudden, excessive movement or an overload of pressure on your facet joints. Pain is felt between two vertebrae in the spine of your lower back.
- Radiculopathy (Pinched Nerve) – The pain from a pinched nerve in your spine is located at the nerve root and can result from the deterioration, compression or injury of the surrounding muscles, cartilage, tendons or bones.
Accidents That May Cause Lower Back Pain
A back injury can result from a number of accidents including a car accident, accidents at work, sports injury, continuous bending, poor posture and long periods of sitting or standing. Common accidents responsible for injury to the lower back include:
- Traumatic Injuries – Car accidents, falls, sports injuries.
- Workplace Injuries
- Sedentary Lifestyle
How Soon Should You Get Treatment?
It is recommended that those with low back pain perform methods of self-care for the first 72 hours after the start of pain. If there is no improvement in pain within this time, you should call your physician.
Some symptoms that accompany back pain may be alarming. Seek treatment as soon as possible for the following:
- Unexplained chills or fever
- Generally feeling unwell
- Numbness, tingling or weakness in one or both of your legs
- Difficulty urinating or incontinence
- Numbness in the groin
- Significant weakness in your legs
- Morning stiffness, pain in other joints, rash, irritated eyes and difficult digestion as these may be symptoms of an autoimmune disease.
The sooner you seek treatment for your lower back pain, the better your outcome will be. No matter the cause of your injury, we have a variety of treatment specialists who have extensive knowledge in the management of lower back pain.
What to Do When Lower Back Pain Becomes Chronic
You can consider your lower back pain to be chronic if it has been present for more than 12 weeks. Chronic low back pain can originate from stress on different body structures or an injury. Whether the spinal cord, bones, muscles, ligaments, joints or nerves are affected, a signal is sent through the nerve endings up the spinal cord to the brain where it is perceived as pain.
Chronic pain is believed to be caused by the sensitization of the nerve pathways that carry the pain signal to the brain. This increases the intensity and frequency at which pain is perceived. At times, even if the original cause of pain has completely healed, these sensitized pathways continue to send pain signals to the brain.
How We Can Help Manage Your Pain
Our clinics are staffed with a variety of healthcare specialties given that no specialty has a complete handle on lower back pain all on its own. Our specialists will collaborate to offer you the best-individualized pain management plan for eliminating your pain and improving your short and long-term recovery from an accident. Our expansive range of services is not commonly found in other pain management practices. We offer a variety of treatment options to help manage your pain, including:
- Pharmacological Intervention
- Massage Therapy
- Physiotherapy & Therapeutic Exercises
- Chiropractic Therapy
- Nerve Blocks
- Joint Injections
- Low-Dose Steroid Injections
Also, there is no need for a referral for our services, we offer same day appointments and typically require no upfront payment.