Low back pain is a very common on distressing condition no one would like to have. Imagine waking up in the morning and unable to get out of bed because of a sharp pain from the lower back. It keeps you in constant touch with pain and affects your quality of life adversely.
What Are The Numbers?
Many people suffer from this ailment. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), as high as 3.8 million Australians suffer from back problems. This is about 16% of the Australian population. It has equal prevalence for males and females. Low back pain sufferers are subjected to daily pain, several pain medications with their attendant side effects, and an unending search for cure.
Who Are Likely To Have Back Pain:
While almost every one can develop back pain, it is commoner in the elderly population. It is estimated that it affects 28% of men and 26% of women in the age group 65-79. It has been found to be less common among under 15s.
Apart from age, occupation can be another risk factor. Those who lift heavy loads, long distance drivers, and secretaries are found to be predisposed to have low back pain due to either strain on their back ligaments and muscles, ultimately affecting the vertebral bones, or poor posturing due to long hours of sitting.
Some people have abnormal vertebral spine shapes instead of the normal S shape of the spine. This abnormal shape puts pressure on parts of the spine and leads to back pain.
Other medical conditions that can lead to low back pain include trauma to the back, osteoarthritis, infections like osteomyelitis.
Pregnancy especially in the second and last trimesters can cause low back pain due to the increasing weight of the fetus; however this is transient as it improves after delivery. Menstrual pain in women also gives rise to low back pain as a major symptom in some women.
How Bad Is The Pain:
Low back pain presents in a variety of ways in different people. It could range from dull aching pain to excruciating pain preventing sleep and movement.
What Help Is Available:
There are several ways to treat low back pain. The first step is to see a Doctor or a physiotherapist to help determine the course and management approach for your pain. Tests like spinal x-rays, MRI, and CT Scans may be ordered. Treatment options include:
Physical therapy: Increased physical activity like walking, exercise, physiotherapy, heat therapy, nerve stimulation; Medical therapy: Mainly pain killers for pain alleviation and treatment of underlying medical condition; Surgery; Alternative remedy: acupuncture, massage, behavioural therapy
Where to Get Help:
Help can be sought from orthopaedic clinics, physiotherapy clinics, sports specialist clinics, pain clinics. There is several physiotherapy Clinics in Ottawa Ontario. Ottawa Physio Clinic is a clinic that handles low back pain with a wide array of specialists, with services for physiotherapy, chiropractic care, massage, acupuncture etc.
Low back pain is a chronic disabling condition and it is important to seek help early before complications arise to improve your quality of life.