What are the types of back pain and how to prevent them?

Spine Surgery Department

Back pain is one of the most common medical conditions in India. It can feel abrupt and sharp or dull and chronic. It can sometimes be a result of an accident, a fall, or carrying something heavy, or it might appear gradually due to the spine’s ageing-related degenerative changes. Back pain can occasionally be brought on by inflammatory diseases or other medical illnesses. However, there are measures for back pain relief to enhance your health and reduce your risk of getting chronic back pain. Treatment of back pain differs based on the cause and symptoms.

What are the types of back pain?

Following are some ways that doctors and researchers categorise different types of back pain:

  • Acute back pain generally lasts for 7 to 14 days and comes back suddenly.
  • Subacute back pain can develop gradually or unexpectedly and lasts for 4 to 12 weeks.
  • Chronic back pain can develop suddenly and last for about more than a month.

What are the reasons for back pain?
Back pain might feel like shooting, searing, or stabbing pain in the muscles. It can even get worse with bending, twisting, lifting, standing, or walking.

Strain, tension, or injury are some of the reasons for back pain. Common reasons for an aching back include:

  • Strained muscles or ligaments
  • A muscle spasm
  • Muscle tension
  • Damaged disks
  • Injuries, fractures, or falls

The following actions have the potential to create strains or spasms:

  • Incorrect lifting technique
  • Lifting something heavy
  • Making an abrupt and awkward movement

Structural problems

Back pain can also be caused by several structural issues:

  • Ruptured disks: Each vertebra in the spine are cushioned by disks. Back pain will develop from increased pressure on a nerve if the disc ruptures.
  • Bulging disks: A bulging disc can increase pressure on the nerve similar to ruptured discs.
  • Sciatica: A herniated or bulging disc pressing on nerve results in a severe, shooting pain that radiates through the buttock and down the back of the leg.
  • Arthritis: Joint issues with the hips, lower back, and other joints can result from osteoarthritis. The area surrounding the spinal cord may also become smaller. This is known as spinal stenosis.
  • Abnormal curve of the spine: Back pain can occur if the spine curves in an unexpected way. For example, scoliosis spine curves to one side.
  • Osteoporosis: As bones become more brittle and porous, especially the vertebrae of the spine, compression fractures become more common.

Movement and posture
Adopting a slumped posture can gradually worsen back and shoulder issues while using computers. Poor posture can cause back pain.

Examples include:

  • Over-stretching
  • Twisting
  • Muscle tension
  • Standing or sitting for long periods
  • Bending awkwardly or for long periods
  • Pushing, pulling, lifting, or carrying something
  • Long driving sessions even when not hunched
  • Straining the neck forward when using a computer or while driving
  • Sleeping on a mattress that does not maintain the body’s posture and support the spine

Other causes

Back pain may result from some medical disorders like:

  • Cauda equina syndrome: A group of spinal nerve roots known as the cauda equine protrudes from the spinal cord’s base. Along with a dull ache in the lower back and upper buttocks, further symptoms include numbness in the buttocks, genitalia, and thighs. Disturbances in bowel and bladder operations can occur occasionally.
  • Cancer of the spine: Back pain could be caused by a tumour on the spine pressing against a nerve.
  • Infection of the spine: An infection of the spine may cause a fever and a sensitive, warm spot on the back.
  • Other infections: Back pain can also result from kidney, bladder, or pelvic infections.
  • Sleep disorders: Compared to other people, those who have sleep disorders are more prone to develop back pain.
  • Shingles: Back pain may result from an infection that can harm the nerves.

What are the symptoms of back pain?
An ache or pain anywhere in the back, sometimes even down to the buttocks and legs, is the primary sign of back pain. Depending on which nerves are impacted, some back problems can produce discomfort in other areas of the body. Following are the reasons why a person should visit their doctor if the pain persists:

  • Fever
  • Weight loss
  • Pain down the legs
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Difficulty in urinating
  • Pain that reaches below the knees
  • Inflammation or swelling on the back
  • Loss of control over bowel motions, often known as faecal incontinence
  • Ongoing back discomfort that does not improve with resting or lying
  • Down Numbness around the genitals
  • Numbness around the buttocks

How Sancheti Hospital helps you?
Sancheti Hospital’s spine department has a strong track record, is academically driven, and is patient-centred. High-risk spine surgery cases, back pain cases, spinal deformity, microscopic spine surgery, and revision spine surgery are all handled by the spine surgery division. Clinical excellence is supported by a research division, and high-tech surgical infrastructure, including minimally-invasive procedures, expensive operating microscopes, and specialist spine implants. There have been touching tales of individuals recovering from surgery and walking. Their spine surgeons in Pune also focus on paraplegic rehabilitation. Without efficient physiotherapy and rehabilitation, no surgical procedure is complete. The physiotherapy department at Sancheti Hospital supports the spinal team by admitting patients for rehabilitation and continued recovery.

Frequently asked questions

  • What is the most common type of back pain?
    The most common type of back pain is from sprains and strains. By lifting something incorrectly, you run the risk of injuring your muscles, tendons, or ligaments. Sneezing, coughing, twisting, or leaning over can also cause back pain in some individuals.
  • How can I know I have back pain?

Symptoms of back pain include…

  • Increasing discomfort when bending and lifting.
  • Pain that gets worse when standing, sitting, or sleeping.
  • Periodic back pain.
  • Stiffness when waking in the morning, and back pain decreasing with exercise.
  • Back pain that spreads to the buttocks, leg, or hip.
  • How can I improve my back pain?

Here are remedies for back pain:

  • Physical Therapy
  • Mindfulness and Meditation
  • Diet
  • Lifestyle modifications
  • Injection-based treatments
  • Alternative treatments
  • Pharmacologic treatments
  • What are the three simple exercises for back pain?
    Biking, swimming, and walking all have the potential to ease back pain. Start with brief sessions and gradually increase the duration. If your back hurts, try swimming where the water supports your body. Avoid any body-twisting strokes.
  • How can I cure my back pain at home?
    Alternate application of heat and ice to the affected region for a total of 20 minutes can help with back pain. Follow the directions on any over-the-counter pain medicine. Keep moving as much as you can. Keep moving throughout the day and engage in low-impact workouts like walking.

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