Back Pain Facts
31 million Americans experience low-back pain at any given time. One-half of all working Americans admit to having back pain symptoms each year. Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work. In fact, back pain is the second most common reason for visits to the doctor’s office, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections. Most cases of back pain are mechanical or non-organic—meaning they are not caused by serious conditions, such as inflammatory arthritis, infection, fracture or cancer. Experts estimate that as many as 80% of the population will experience a back problem at some time in our lives.
Tips to Prevent Back Pain
- Maintain a healthy diet and weight.
- Remain active—under the supervision of your doctor of chiropractic.
- Avoid prolonged inactivity or bed rest.
- Warm up or stretch before exercising or other physical activities, such as gardening.
- Maintain proper posture.
- Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes.
- Sleep on a mattress of medium firmness to minimize any curve in your spine.
- Lift with your knees, keep the object close to your body, and do not twist when lifting.
- Quit smoking. Smoking impairs blood flow, resulting in oxygen and nutrient deprivation to spinal tissues.
- Work with your doctor of chiropractic to ensure that your computer workstation is ergonomically correct.
Back Pain Treatment
An extensive study of all currently available care for low back problems by the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research—a federal government research organization—recommends that low back pain sufferers choose the most conservative care first. And it recommended spinal manipulation as the only safe and effective, drugless form of initial professional treatment for acute low back problems in adults.