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What can cause low back injuries?
Many things can cause low back injuries-muscle strain or spasm, sprains of ligaments (which attach bone to bone), joint problems or a "slipped disk." The most common cause is using your back muscles in activities you're not used to, like lifting heavy furniture or doing yard work.
A slipped disk happens when the disk between the bones bulges and presses on nerves. This is often caused by twisting while lifting. But many people won't know what caused their slipped disk.
What can I do for relief when I've hurt my lower back?
The best position for relief when your back hurts is to lie on your back on the floor with pillows under your knees, with your hips and knees bent and your feet on a chair, or just with your hips and knees bent. This takes the pressure and weight off your back.
If you're resting a hurt back, you may need 1 to 2 days of this sort of rest. Resting longer than this can cause your muscles to weaken, which can slow your recovery. Even if it hurts, walk around for a few minutes every hour.
What else can I do for relief?
Heating pads can help to relax painful muscle spasms. Use heat for 20 to 30 minutes at a time. Ice packs and massages may also give relief.
Nonprescription medicines that reduce pain or swelling include aspirin, acetaminophen (brand name: Tylenol), naproxen (brand name: Aleve), ketoprofen (brand name: Orudis), and ibuprofen (brand name: Motrin).
Call your family doctor if:
Lumbago is a seldom-used term to mean mild to severe low back pain. The pain can be acute or chronic and affects young and old people. Years ago doctors associated lumbago with rheumatism seemingly brought on by exposure to cold damp surroundings. Poor posture, sudden movement, coughing and sneezing were also thought to inspire episodes of lumbago. Not to discredit the reputations of yesterday's doctors, but medicine has since greatly advanced and the term lumbago has been replaced with accurate diagnostic terms.
There are many things that cause low back pain or lumbago. Listed below are some of the more common conditions, or diagnostic terms:
Is it possible, like fine wine, to get better with age? In some ways, by staying healthy and remaining active, we can. In fact, studies show that older people who continue to have active lifestyles, experience less health problems as they age.
The progression of aging and it’s affects on how we function differ widely among individuals. Over the course of time, the normal aging of tissue causes changes to the anatomy. This is especially true in degenerative changes of the spine. In most people, these changes are gradual. In fact, many people have degenerative changes and don’t know it. They may only become aware of these changes when being examined during a routine checkup.
Degeneration of the spine is complex and often unpredictable. When degenerative changes occur in the joints, accompanied by pain and swelling, it is referred to as osteoarthritis. Other degenerative conditions that affect the spine include:
• Degenerative Disc Disease
Choose Safe Activities
Before starting any new exercise program, be sure to see your doctor. Talk about the types of activities you are interested in doing and make sure your doctor gives you the ok to do them. You may want to ask your doctor the following questions:
• “Is it safe for me to exercise?”
• “What types of exercises are best for me?”
• “Are there any types of exercise I should avoid?”
• “Do any of my medications make it dangerous for me to do endurance exercises?”
While you can’t stop the aging process entirely, you can take steps to keep yourself as healthy as possible as you age. The benefits of regular exercise are numerous, so start today! Find an activity you enjoy and find out how wonderful it is to get older!
Article reprinted from Spine Universe