Lower back pain is a common problem that affects millions of people every day. If it’s severe enough, chronic pain can prevent you from working, doing everyday chores around the house, or even enjoying the simple things you love.
So when you find yourself saying, “My lower back is killing me,” you want to find relief as quickly as possible.
Fortunately, there are a variety of options that can help. We’ll take a closer look at understanding lower back pain, its symptoms and causes, when medical attention may be necessary, and various treatment options.
Why Are You Saying, “My Lower Back Is Killing Me”?
Lower back pain is discomfort that occurs in the lumbosacral region of your back — the area just above your tailbone. Common causes include ligament strain, disk injuries, arthritis, or conditions like sciatica or spinal stenosis. Chronic back pain is persistent and lasts for more than three months.
It’s important to understand chronic pain as it often requires different management strategies compared to acute pain. When you tell your doctor, “My lower back is killing me,” it’s critical for your care provider to identify the actual source of your pain.
Symptoms of Lower Back Pain
The physical signs of lower back pain can vary but often include muscle aches, shooting or stabbing pains, pain radiating down the leg, or reduced flexibility in the back. Besides the physical discomfort, lower back pain can significantly affect your daily life and well-being by restricting your mobility and interfering with sleep.
Be sure to describe your symptoms as accurately as possible to your doctor or medical specialist. The more information they have about your condition, the better equipped they’ll be to identify the best course of action.
Causes of Chronic Lower Back Pain
Several medical conditions can lead to chronic lower back pain. These include degenerative disk disease, herniated disks, spinal stenosis, injuries, and spondylolisthesis, among others. Lifestyle factors such as poor posture, obesity, psychological stress, and lack of regular exercise can also contribute to chronic lower back pain.
When to Seek Medical Attention
Even if you find yourself saying, “My lower back is killing me” but aren’t sure when it’s the right time to seek professional medical help, look for these signs:
• Your lower back pain is severe
• Your pain doesn’t improve with rest
• If you have numbness or tingling in your legs
• Your pain lasts several weeks or months without relief
If you experience any of these symptoms, see your doctor or a pain specialist right away. If your pain is ongoing, it’s important to schedule regular check-ups to manage your condition effectively.
Non-Invasive Treatments for Lower Back Pain
Exercise and physical therapy can strengthen your back and abdominal muscles and improve your flexibility—both of which can reduce chronic lower back pain. Mindfulness and relaxation techniques can help manage the emotional aspects of chronic pain. Heat therapy can increase blood flow and bring nutrients to the muscles and tissues in the back while cold therapy can reduce inflammation.
What Your Medical Practitioner Can Do
Every patient is different, so their care provider may consider numerous options — and probably a combination of treatments — for you whenever you tell them, “My lower back is killing me.”
They may prescribe over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers which can provide short-term relief for acute lower back pain. Depending on your condition, they will likely recommend lifestyle changes such as exercise, stretching, or mindfulness techniques.
For chronic or severe cases, doctors may recommend therapeutic injections like trigger point injections, nerve blocks, or radiofrequency ablations. These treatments tend to be very effective for most patients, and provide relief within a few hours or days and can last weeks or months.
In some instances, surgery or other invasive procedures may be necessary if other treatments fail to relieve the pain.
Find Back Pain Help With HPM
At HPM, we provide advanced treatments for all types of chronic pain. Our trained medical specialists take the time to identify the true source of your pain and collaborate directly with your primary care provider to provide you with the best treatment plan available.
We understand how living with lower back pain can be challenging, yet we also know that understanding its causes and symptoms can help you better manage your condition. Remember that lifestyle modifications such as maintaining correct posture and engaging in regular exercise are essential preventive measures against lower back pain.
If you’re struggling with chronic lower back pain, reach out to us at HPM to find specialized care near you. With the right help, you can get back to the life you deserve.