ICYMI: Bankers, office workers, bricklayers, others risk back pain –Expert

By imabass18 • June 16, 2019, 10 PM • 94 views • 28 comments
ICYMI: Bankers, office workers, bricklayers, others risk back pain –Expert

 A chiropractor , Dr . Yinka Awoyemi , talks about back pain and its treatment with SIMON UTEBOR What is back pain ? The human vertebral column is divided into the neck ( cervical spine); mid back ( thoracic spine) and the lower back ( lumbar spine and sacrum ) . Pains coming from the thoracic and lumbosacral spine are referred to as back pain while cervical spine is called neck pain . Are all back pains linked to underlying diseases ? No . Not all back pains are due to underlying diseases . There are several causes of back pain and not all of them are disease conditions. When is it appropriate for person suffering from back pain to indulge in self -treatment ? This depends on what you mean by self -treatment and what the cause of the back pain is . If you picked up a box and your back hurts slightly and you apply cold compress to the area of pain , that could be termed self -treatment and that will be fine . However , if it doesn ’ t get better after that, the person should seek expert advice . When should someone battling back pain see a doctor and which doctor is recommended ? Ideally , if your back pain persists for more than three days, you should see an expert . Experts such as orthopaedists, chiropractors , osteopaths and physiotherapists are all qualified to take a complete history , perform a physical examination ( including X -ray and scans ) and come up with a diagnosis or refer to the appropriate expert if unsure . What causes back pain ? The causes of back pain are trauma , bad posture, arthritis , pathology bulging or ruptured disc , osteoporosis , idiopathic relating to or denoting any disease or condition which arises spontaneously or for which the cause is unknown. What are the signs and symptoms of back pain ? Low back pain caused by disc bulge signs and symptoms can be pain radiating to the lower limb ( s) , numbness and tingling , weakness of the muscles , loss of sensation and difficulty in walking in some cases . How is it diagnosed ? After consultation, a thorough physical examination ( may require X -ray, scans and other tests ) . How is it treated? In mild to moderate cases , physical therapy and spinal alignment are sufficient. But with severe cases , more invasive treatment such as spinal injection and surgery might be required . What medications will you recommend for sufferers ? I don ’ t prescribe medication . That is the role of the general practitioners . What conditions are linked to back pain ? In some instances , dysfunctional organs can refer pain to the back . For example , one can have peptic ulcer ( sore in one ’ s stomach or small intestine ) . It can also refer pain to one ’ s mid back ( visceral -somatic ) . This is why it is necessary to take a good history of the patient and correlate with physical findings . What factors can make someone prone to back pain ? Some of the factors that might put a person at higher risk of back pain are physical jobs such as bricklaying , plumbing among others . People engaged in these kinds of jobs are at risk because of the physical nature of their jobs . Also, bankers and other office workers who have to sit for hours are also at risk . How can back pain be avoided or its recurrence prevented ? The most common cause of back pain , idiopathic , can be avoided by improving one ’ s postures during sleeping , sitting , lifting and standing . People can also avoid back pain through shedding weight , diet and also regular exercises . Can sitting or standing posture cause back pain ? Yes . How a person sit or stand can be a factor. Therefore , people should sit into an upright ergonomic chair if possible . Otherwise , people should sit back into an upright chair and avoid slouching . Are there special shoes , furniture , foam , etc that can prevent or cure back pain ? I would not put it that way . They don ’ t cure back pain . They are all tools that help take the strain off the back and allow it to heal . For people with flat feet , there are shoes with arch support which can help . Also, memory mattress supports the curves of the spine. The ergonomic office chairs which I talked about earlier can also be of help . How can back pain be managed ? As a chiropractor , we believe the misalignment of the spine causes mechanical back pain . Therefore , after aligning the spine, we recommend neuromuscular rehabilitation . In other words , it strengthens the spine and improves balance. This usually provides a long -term relief provided the patient is compliant with the other lifestyles changes we discussed earlier – sitting and lifting properly etc. When is surgery needed ? Before considering surgery , there are several instances one has to take into consideration besides the obvious , that is pathology , fracture. Spinal dysfunction that affects the bowel and bladder requires surgery to decompress nerves that control the organs. Also, if after conservative treatments ( physical and psychological therapies) , the severe pain persists , one can opt for surgery . What roles do physical therapy and exercise play in alleviating back pain ? Physical therapy , including spinal alignment and muscular rehabilitation are recognised as the preferred treatment for back pain . This was recently supported in a research on treatment of back pain by Harvard University Medical School, United States of America. There is a myth that bad back pain can result in paralysis . What is your take on this ? If back pain is severe enough , one ’ s movement can be restricted . There is a belief that severe back pain amount to back damage . Do you with this ? That ’ s not necessarily true . Some people experience severe back pain and when you do an X -ray or scan , theirs is mild degenerative changes.


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