5 Myths About Lower Back Pain
According to the American Chiropractic Association, about 31 million Americans experience lower back pain. While a number of factors contribute to lower back pain, such as lack of stretching, sports or exercise accidents, or improper lifting of heavy objects, what can potentially be more harmful are lower back pain misconceptions that may prevent you from a safer, quicker recovery. Here are some common myths and misconceptions about lower back pain.
Common Lower Back Pain Myths
- If I move, my back pain will be worse. Staying on the move can actually be the solution to relieving back pain. Often the discomfort comes from muscle spasms, so gently moving and stretching out where it hurts can relax those tense muscles and relieve the pain in your lower back.
- I need to stop exercising, especially with weights. While rest is important for recovery, studies show that continuing regular exercise can actually help your back when it’s in pain. This includes strength and weight training. As long as you take it easy and slowly build up intensity in your workouts, you can continue to safely exercise.
- All I need is a back scan to find out what’s wrong. Adults, whether they have back pain or not, experience back changes as they age. These changes don’t always cause problems, but the changes could show up on a scan. Because of this, it’s important to remember that these scans don’t always show sources of pain. In fact, less than one percent of spine scans tell where the pain is coming from.
- A heavy backpack causes major back pain. A common misconception is that if you have or carry large, heavy backpacks, then you will have back issues. The reality is that there aren’t any studies that show the direct relationship between the two. Since back pain is so common, it’s easy to blame everyday occurrences, such as slouching, carrying heavy items, or exercise, for contributing to the problem.
- Since my back hurts, it’s damaged. Everyone interprets pain differently so pain can’t always signal damage. For example, not-so-serious backache may be a lower level of pain for one person but can feel more severe for someone else. While aches are subjective, prolonged pain is serious and should get checked professionally.
Reliable Lower Back Pain Recovery Experts
Despite lower back pain being so common, you shouldn’t accept it as a normal part of your everyday life. If your lower back pain is keeping you from enjoying your daily activities, our team at Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine is happy to relieve your pain, help you recover, and get you moving again. Schedule your visit today by requesting an appointment online or giving us a call at 904-825-0540.
Brian Haycook, MD
Board Certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. Dr. Haycook has specific expertise in the latest treatment of spine related injuries