(HealthyAccess)- Lower back pain can be incredibly uncomfortable. There are many injury-related causes for low back pain, including strain, sprain, and ruptured discs. But there are many other common reasons that could be causing our lower back to hurt, and it is important to determine the source of the pain to know how to fix it.
The Mayo Clinic has identified demographics at a higher risk of lower back pain:
- Older adults
- Those who exercise less often
- Individuals who are overweight
- Those who lift improperly
- Individuals with psychological issues
- Individuals with underlying diseases
Of course, anyone can experience lower back pain. It is all too common–as are the reasons we experience it. Physical and psychological problems, including stress, can manifest physical pain.
Let’s take a look at four common reasons our lower backs could be hurting and what we can do to relieve the pain.
Being stressed can actually cause physical pain–including lower back discomfort. This pain is caused primarily by emotional or psychological challenges.
Many conditions related to menstruation can cause lower back pain, including PMS, PMDD, endometriosis, and dysmenorrhea.
Sleeping in the wrong position can cause lower back pain. For improved sleep, Healthline recommends sleeping:
- On one’s side with a pillow between the knees
- In the fetal position
- On the stomach with a pillow underneath the abdomen
- On the back with a pillow beneath the knees
- Flat on the back
Sitting with poor posture can also cause lower back pain. Leaning over a desk, slouching when sitting, or performing tasks or exercise with poor posture can lead to lower back discomfort.
How to treat low back pain
There are so many potential root causes for low back pain, but what we need most is relief. So, how do we treat it?
- According to InformedHealth.org, progressive muscle relaxation and mindfulness-based stress reduction exercises can be effective at treating lower back pain.
- For chronic pain, cognitive behavioral therapy, hypnosis, and even psychiatric medication can help.
- For menstruation-related back pain, hormonal birth control, NSAIDs, acupuncture or acupressure, and even surgery can help relieve the conditions causing the pain.
- For stress-related back pain, it is recommended to get more exercise to help reduce the harmful impacts of stress. Counseling is also recommended to address the emotional or psychological issues causing the pain.
- For posture-related back pain, consider sitting with support and keeping a straight posture throughout the day, rather than slumping or slouching.
If we can identify the cause of our discomfort, we can make life adjustments to begin to fix it. Of course, consulting our primary care physician first can help rule out any medical condition, such as arthritis or osteoarthritis. With a few small changes, we may find that the everyday pain we’ve tolerated becomes a distant memory, leaving us free to live the healthy, active lives we love.
~Here’s to a Happier, Healthier Life!
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