According to the NHS 8 out of 10 people have suffered from back pain. Are you one of them?
Back Pain? Why does our lower back or neck hurt?
Some causes include:
- Trauma caused by an accident or even sudden movement
- Repetitive wrong movement or posture
- Excessive movement or load
- Not enough movement or load
How does the back work?
The spine is a column of 26 bones separated by jellybean-like cushions (intervertebral discs) and then the sacrum and coccyx (tailbone). It has an S shape and is flexible thanks to the discs, ligaments, and muscles.
The spine has three main functions:
Protects your spinal cord and surrounding structures: The spinal cord relays the messages from the brain to the body and then back to the brain allowing us to control our movements and react to quick changing situations. Without an intact spinal cord, we could not move any part of our body and our organs could not function.
Provides the main support of your body: The vertebrae allow the body to be in balance and maintain an upright posture. This creates space for the organs and a point of anchorage for muscles for optimal leverage and movements.
Imagine the spine as the shaft of a crane: extend one arm in front of you. Imagine this is the arm of the crane. What would happen if the shaft of the crane was weak or misplaced? The loading action would stress and possibly damage the shaft. The same happens to our back with improper lifting technique, or spending hours slouching while sitting. An upright posture allows for stability and efficiency for the muscles and organs to work.
Enables you to move freely and bend with flexibility: Thanks to the coordinated work of muscles and nerves these 26 bones move toward each other. Strong muscles and bones, flexible tendons and ligaments, and sensitive nerves contribute to a healthy spine. The muscles must be able alternate between stability and flexibility actions.
When do we get back pain:
When this well-organised system is forced to function in a suboptimal way for a prolonged time things start to go wrong. Muscles can’t support the bones properly, too much pressure can cause deterioration of joints and discs, inadequate movements can irritate the nerves.
Symptoms: Ache across the lower back or neck, pins and needles down the legs or arm, or changes in bladder and bowl control.
Sometimes the pain can subside with rest and medications in a matter of weeks, but it usually restricts your life. The bad news is that back pain tends to get worse as we get older. So it is worth to look after your back now if you want to avoid often debilitating pain and restriction of movements in the future.
We are built to move, not to spend hours on end sitting behind the desk, the steering wheel, in from of the TV.
- So embrace movement. This can be as little as dancing in the kitchen to walk around the block after a meal or sitting on a gym ball instead of the office chair.
- Check your seated posture and your work station, and get up regularly.
- Warm up and cool down after exercise especially if it involves bending. Bend back if you spent time bent down. If you suffer of persistent or acute back pain do not hesitate to contact your trusted health practitioner.
At Swissphysio we can help you take care of your back and relieve pain with face-to-face or video consultations.
Call us today on 0191 296 0567 and book your appointment or book here .Published on: 7th October 2020