Low back pain (low back pain): what it can be and how to treat it

Low back pain causes pain at the end of the spine, and may or may not be accompanied by pain that radiates to one or both buttocks or to the legs in the same direction as the sciatic nerve. It can be classified as:

  • Acute low back pain: Back pain appeared less than 6 weeks ago, being caused by factors such as poor posture and improvement with medication or physical therapy;
  • Chronic low back pain: Ador on the back has been present for more than 12 weeks, its cause is not always identified and treatment involves medication, physical therapy and exercise on a regular basis.

It can be caused by poor posture, a bad back or can be associated with other diseases, such as herniated discs or spinal arthrosis. Its treatment is done with the use of anti-inflammatories and analgesics and physiotherapy sessions, which may involve the use of hot water bags, exercises and stretching.

Symptoms and diagnosis

The symptoms of low back pain are:

  • Pain at the end of the spine, below the last ribs and above the buttocks;
  • Contracture and increased muscle tension in the affected region;
  • Inability to sit or stand for a long time, making it necessary to seek new positions to sit, sleep or walk.

In order to diagnose low back pain, the orthopedist, rheumatologist or physiotherapist may, in addition to observing the signs of the disease, request an image exam, such as an x-ray and magnetic resonance imaging, to check for the existence of other diseases involved, such as a herniated disc, or to check if the sciatic nerve is involved, which helps to define the most appropriate treatment for each case.

Sometimes the exams are normal despite the difficulty of moving and performing daily activities, requiring treatment. Usually, this type of back pain is more frequent in people who practice manual activities, such as weight lifting, repetitive movements, or sitting or standing for a long time, always in the same position.

What causes low back pain

Back pain can develop due to poor posture, anatomical deformity or local trauma, but it is not always possible to discover its cause, and it can appear at all ages, affecting men and women equally.

Some situations that favor pain at the end of the spine are:

  • Repetitive efforts;
  • Small traumas, such as falling;
  • Sedentary lifestyle;
  • Postural error;
  • Non-ergonomic position at work;
  • Spinal arthrosis;
  • Osteophytosis (parrot's beak);
  • Osteoporosis in the spine;
  • Myofascial syndrome;
  • Spondylolisthesis;
  • Ankylosing spondylitis;
  • Rheumatoid arthritis;
  • Tumor;
  • Local infection.

Excess weight also influences the presence of pain at the end of the spine, because in addition to altering the point of gravity, there is greater flaccidity and distension of the abdomen.

How to treat low back pain

The treatment for low back pain can be done by taking anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, analgesics and muscle relaxants. Check out some examples of back pain remedies, which may be indicated by the doctor. Physiotherapy is also indicated, and can be performed with methods of superficial and / or deep heating, stretching and strengthening exercises for the back.

Check out in the video below what you can do to fight back pain:

Signs that low back pain can be very serious

Some signs and symptoms that may indicate that back pain is a more serious condition, and that needs urgent medical evaluation are:

  • Be under 20 and over 55 years of age;
  • Having fallen or been in an accident recently;
  • Also have chest or chest pain;
  • Fever;
  • Weight loss without apparent cause (diet or exercise);
  • Long-term use of medicines;
  • Changes in sensitivity, feeling of shock or numbness.

In these cases, you should go to the orthopedic doctor as soon as possible.