Have you ever heard the saying…”No Pain, No Gain”. Well that is the good type of pain. Is there such a thing as “good pain”? Well yes, one that yields a successful outcome and gets you closer to your goals.
Who am I kidding? The pain that we usually refer to is an unpleasant feeling. Sometimes the pain comes and goes, at times it lingers. Some causes of back pain include trauma(injuries), mechanical(dysfunction of structures of the spine), and acquired/degenerative changes (aging, scoliosis) to name a few.
Structures of the spine that can present as pain generators are inclusive of the bone/joints, disc, nerves, tendons, ligaments, and muscles. Spine pain can also be classified as axial (staying just in the neck or back) vs. radicular(radiating to the arms or legs).
Some preventive measures include core strengthening as well as other total body exercises help to stabilize the structures around the spine. A healthy diet also promotes a healthy spine. Illicit substances such as excessive tobacco and alcohol lead to a decline in functioning of the body as well as poor wound healing.
If your pain persists you should seek evaluation from your health care provider. Imaging such as X-rays, MRIs or CT scans can help to delineate the source of pain.
Ways to manage your pain include rest from the particular activity that causes pain. At times a regimented physical therapy or aquatic therapy program is beneficial in restoring biomechanics. Modalities such as heat, ice, bracing as needed can be added to the therapy program. Medications can also help but only under the direction of your health care provider to insure that the analgesics don’t interact with your other medications. If no improvement from the aforementioned, further evaluation by a spine specialist may be required. Interventional spine injections can aide in relief of symptoms. Surgical management is a last resort.