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 back pain

back pain: causes

Although chiropractors diagnose and treat many types of mechanical, structural and postural problems and their pain outlets, the most common reason to seek help from a chiropractor is generalised and specific back pain.  Our team of the best chiropractors in Edinburgh can help identify and treat any back pain you might be experiencing.

Back pain is very common. Most people will suffer one or more episodes of back pain during their lives. In many cases, it will start suddenly and can get better quickly. However, back pain can often be painful, debilitating and persistent, and many people can suffer repeated episodes.

There are many different types of back pain, with different causes. Back pain may be felt in one or both sides of the back, between the shoulder blades, around the waist area and into the buttocks and down either the front or back of the legs. The pain can be sharp or dull, and can spread into the lower legs and sometimes even the feet. Many people also experience other associated symptoms such as sciatic type pains that are commonly perceived as pins and needles, tingling, numbness and weakness in all or part of the leg and foot.

 

Back pain may start following a specific incident, such as bending awkwardly or lifting a heavy weight but can also develop gradually, as a result of poor posture, uncomfortable working positions, equipment or ergonomics or even as a repetitive strain.

Wear and tear may also be a contributing factor to back pain. The shock-absorbing pads or discs between the bones of the back can narrow with age and this can cause stiffness, compensatory pain and make it difficult to move.

Back pain can be very painful due to inflammation and muscle spasm, and you may want to take it easy for a while. But resting for more than a day or two does not usually help, and may actually do more harm than good. Your back is designed for movement. The sooner you get back to normal activity, the sooner your back will feel better. The people who cope best are those who stay active, within moderation and try to get on the best they can with their daily routine.

your spine: one of the strongest parts of your body

the spine consists of:

  • three sections, cervical (neck), thoracic (mid) and lumbar (lower), these sections connect your hips and pelvis through your body to your skull.

  • the spinal nerve runs all the way through your spine and is responsible for the delivery of messages to all parts of your body from your brain and vice versa.

  • the vertebrae are the supporting structure, these have disks between them to act as shock absorbers and help maintain flexibility.

  • the nerve is protected by these vertebrae.

  • strong ligaments and powerful supporting muscles support the structure.

Diagram showing parts of spine
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