Back Pain Problems
Let’s start this one off with the single biggest back pain myth of them all.
“This isn’t relevant to me! I won’t get back pain.”
Hate to break it to you, but if you haven’t had a back pain problems yet, there is an 80% chance you will have it at some point in your life, as 8/10 of us will experience it in our lifetime.
Even if you really never do get a back pain problem, statistically speaking four out of five of your loved ones will experience it.
So yes, this is very relevant to you.
Back pain takes many shapes and forms and sometimes it is not obvious you have a serious back pain problems.
Many of us will write off an ache or a little tension as “just sleeping funny” for days, weeks, months, or even years before we acknowledge that there is a serious underlying problem.
A lot of the reason for this is because we believe a number of myths about back pain.
Myth: Back pain is back pain.
Back pain is a different experience for everyone depending on who you are, what caused it, and what other problems you may have.
Anything from crippling agony to a mild ache can be considered A back pain problem.
Myth: My back pain problem will clear up on its own.
Back pain is not a phantom illness. It did not show up for no reason and it will not go away for no reason.
Often the pain stops us from doing the very thing which caused it, and this gives the impression it went away on its own.
But in reality we need to correct our behavior to avoid it happening again.
Myth: Young people don’t get back pain.
Young people can and do get back pain, often just as frequently and just as seriously as older people.
Because back pain can be caused by genetics, injury, or staying hunched over a desk all day, young people are more at risk than ever before.
Myth: Sitting and standing straight is the best way to prevent it.
Slouching may be a terrible idea, but sitting perfectly straight is not good for us either.
In reality, simply being in the same position for too long is enough to harm the muscles, ligaments, and nerves in our backs, giving us back pain problems.
Myth: All back pain is injury.
Many people assume that if your back hurts, something is broken.
But this is just not the case.
Very often our pain is an overworked muscle or ligament, and it will heal on its own if we stop the bad behavior which caused it.
Myth: All back pain is structural.
On the other hand, some people assume that all back pain problems are caused by illness or stretching and can be addressed naturopathically.
Sometimes a back pain problem does come from a muscle tear or a fracture, and needs to be seen by specialists.
Myth: Lifting heavy things can injure your back.
This myth has a grain of truth in it:
lifting heavy things can indeed injure you.
But so can lifting light things.
The key is actually in knowing how to lift safely.
Power lifters can lift enormous weights and not injure themselves because they lift safely.
Myth: If you rest, it will heal on its own.
Some a back injury problem really can heal with a little rest but most of the time you will need medical intervention or to stay physically active if you wish to heal properly.
Resting too much may also cause muscle weakness, making your back more vulnerable in the future.
Myth: Back pain means you should take it easy with the exercise.
Many people, especially people struggling with overweight or underweight, believe that exercise causes and worsens your back pain problem.
Although exercising can set off back pain, in reality being a healthy weight and staying active will help you avoid it in the long run.
Myth: You need to support your back at all times.
Many of us bought into this and got solid mattresses, firm backed chairs, even back braces.
Like all muscles, the muscles in our backs need to work, or they will waste away.
The best support for your back is… itself! Keep it strong and you will suffer less back pain.
Back Pain Facts
Back pain is a pretty poorly understood physical ailment, which is confusing considering that four out of five of us will experience it at some point in their lives, and half of us will have it this year. And perhaps it is because it is so common that we disregard it so much.
After all, if back pain is just something which happens to us, it is easy to disregard it the same way we disregard a cold or a small bruise.
But unlike with a cold or a bump, back pain is rarely something that happens to us randomly.
Usually it is caused by our life in some way, shape, or form, and if we ignore it it will never actually go away.
So we must become more back pain aware if we are to avoid it as much as possible.
Fact: Back pain can happen to any of us.
Many people assume that they are too young to get back pain, or too old for it to start from nowhere.
Others assume that their back pain was inherited from their parents, or that because it does not run in the family, they will never get it.
In reality, back pain can affect anyone as it has many causes.
Fact: Back pain is a sign something is wrong.
Another false assumption is that back pain is a matter of bad luck, like catching a cold, and we cannot do anything about it.
However, a back pain problem is almost always a sign that we have an injury, poor posture, or even a degenerative condition which needs treating.
Fact: Back pain progresses.
Not all back pain will get worse. It has actually been found that back pain rates go down around retirement age, due to better posture and more rest.
A back pain problem can and will get worse if you do not treat it.
Fact: Back pain can go away at any time.
Another assumption that we make is that a back pain problem is just a part of who we are, of how our life is lived, or a genetic thing we cannot handle.
However, we must remember at all times that back pain could potentially go away, so we cannot give up hope.
Fact: Back pain is a symptom, not a disease.
The way we talk about back pain we often consider it a disease that needs treating directly, usually with massage or medication.
But because your back pain problems were caused by something, it will come back if you do not remove the root cause of the problem.
Fact: Being fit and healthy can help avoid back pain.
Being a healthy weight and having strong muscles can encourage your back to build up, which will correct your posture, build bone density, and generally make you less vulnerable to back pains of any kind.
Fact: It is wise to let your back support itself.
Many people turn to hard mattresses, supportive chairs, ergonomic furniture, and corsets to force their back to be upright at all times.
Not moving or using your back enough is as bad as slouching or hunching over.
By moving too little our muscles can waste and then we will not be able to hold our backs on our own.
Fact: The spine is strong, resilient, and heals well.
If you watch enough movies you would be forgiven for assuming that the spine is as strong as a dry stick and will break at the slightest provocation.
However, it is actually very well designed and incredibly robust and it can heal back that way too!
Fact: There is no one cure for a back pain problem.
Back pain is not one condition, as we have discussed.
It is a symptom which could be caused by any number of other ailments.
So we cannot cure it with a pill, or a special exercise. We must treat the cause instead.
Fact: Any treatment is good treatment.
If your pain is virtually unbearable, do not worry about not seeming “genuine” if you need paracetamol, acupuncture, or a special massage to feel less pain.
It is your body and any method of pain relief, proven or doubted, is good if it helps.