What’s Causing Your Back Pain? Most Common Ailments & Remedies
For most of us, chronic back pain feels like the world’s most uncomfortable puzzle. Our backs lock up when we bend down. They fizzle with pain when we stand up straight. At night, back pain keeps us dreamless, and on a plane or in a car, it makes travel unbearable. So, what on earth could be causing this unknowable pain?
At Palmetto Bone & Joint in Chapin, Newberry, and Clinton, SC, our orthopedic doctors know how to uncover and treat back pain of any variety. With the latest non-surgical treatments and the most advanced surgical technology in the state, we offer a way forward and through chronic back pain.
Here are the most common causes of back pain and how Palmetto Bone & Joint treats them.
How Palmetto Bone & Joint Solves Back Pain in Chapin, SC
Chronic back pain can easily turn active, healthy adults into couch potatoes. More and more, sedentary lifestyles are associated with increased health risks and even premature death.
To keep South Carolinians up and moving, Dr. James Loging and his team combine the latest orthopedic care, rehabilitation, and surgical techniques. To schedule your appointment, call (864) 833-3046 or contact us online.
The Most Common Causes of Back Pain & Their Treatments
At Palmetto Bone & Joint, we know that orthopedic surgery isn’t always your first choice. But if our non-surgical treatments for back pain fall short, trust our Outpatient Surgical center and expert rehab facilities to get you back on track.
According to the Arthritis Foundation, osteoarthritis is incredibly common, affecting over 32 million Americans. Additionally, osteoarthritis doesn’t discriminate, plaguing athletes and obese individuals alike. When it affects the spine or back, osteoarthritis is most often called “spinal arthritis” or “spondylosis.”
Caused by repeated stress (as with training or sports) or by everyday wear and tear on the cartilage that supports joint health, spondylosis presents with numerous symptoms, including:
- Shoulder, neck, & back pain
- Grinding in the bones of the neck
- Weakness in back, arms, or legs
- Frequent headaches
- Difficulty keeping balance
Surgical remedies for osteoarthritis are rare. Here, non-surgical alternatives generally perform better. Depending on the exact symptoms and causes of your spinal arthritis, Palmetto Bone & Joint may recommend analgesics, NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), and even lumbar epidural steroid injections.
Especially common in menopausal women, osteoporosis can hollow out our bones and put us in a chair—possibly for the rest of our lives. Typified by an increase in weak or brittle bones, osteoporosis occurs when a hormonal imbalance, poor diet, or genetics make it difficult for the body to maintain bone mass.
Symptoms of osteoporosis may include:
- Back pain
- Poor posture
- A surprise fracture (broken bone)
Many patients don’t even realize they have osteoporosis until a minor episode results in a broken bone.
Tremendous strides are being made in daily oral medication to manage symptoms and maximize health. At Palmetto Bone & Joint, we’ll speak to you about your medical history to determine if you’re a candidate for leading medication. Additionally, we’ll speak to you about lifestyle changes that can support bone health and even add bone mass to reduce your chances of a fracture.
Given the network of complex human nerves crisscrossing the back, pain can be difficult to pinpoint. Sciatica is enemy #1 when it comes to mysterious sizzling or aches that travel from one part of your body to another. When a herniated disc, area of inflammation, or bone spur pinches the sciatic nerve, pain can travel to the strangest places.
Other sciatica symptoms include:
- Difficulty bending over or down
- Sudden, traveling pains
- Inflexible toes & feet
- Slow reflexes
The right treatment for your sciatica depends on the cause. When swelling pinches the sciatic nerve, we may use oral treatments (NSAIDs) or lumbar epidural steroid injections. When a herniated disc is to blame, surgical treatments are the best option. Sciatica surgery works by removing material from the disc to free the sciatic nerve and reduce symptoms.
Much like the cartilage in your knees, shoulders, and elbows, spinal discs serve as cushions for your vertebrae. But similar to cartilage elsewhere, these discs can degenerate over time. During athletic or everyday activities, these discs may rupture, causing any number of symptoms, including:
- Pain on one side of the body/back
- Neck pain or shoulder pain
- Sharp leg or hip pain
- Difficulty sitting or standing for long periods
Herniated Disc Treatments
When it comes to herniated discs, conservative treatments (medication, injections) may not be enough. Most patients will need some form of physical therapy and rehabilitation to improve mobility and range of motion. In some cases, surgery may be recommended.
At Palmetto Bone & Joint, we use the latest medical imaging technology to uncover the cause of your back pain. Afterward, we can recommend a course of action customized to your needs.
Most common in children and teens, but not unheard of in undiagnosed adults, scoliosis is a sideways bend in the spine. Scoliosis has no single identifiable cause, but the spinal condition affects upwards of 2%-3% of the population. In children and adults, scoliosis can be identified by several symptoms, including:
- A curved spine
- Uneven joints (shoulders, hips, legs at different heights)
- Back pain in older patients
When detected early, scoliosis can be reversed by a back brace. Over time, this brace corrects the shape and orientation of the spine to limit symptoms in later life. Adults with scoliosis may need surgery to physically reshape the spine for increased comfort and enhanced quality of life.
Solve Your Back Pain with Palmetto Bone & Joint in Chapin, SC
The back is a complex area full of intersecting muscles, joints, bones, discs, and nerves. But while mysterious initially, back pain shouldn’t remain undiagnosed or unsolved for the rest of your days.
Among older women especially, back pain has been associated with higher mortality rates. The sooner you understand and treat your back pain, the sooner you can get back to living a healthy, longer life.
To finally put a name to your persistent back pain—whatever the cause—schedule your appointment with Palmetto Bone & Joint in Chapin, SC, today!
Let Us Diagnose & Solve Your Back Pain So You Can Get Back to Living.
Something about back pain turns us into armchair orthopedic doctors. We monitor the pain, the inflexibility, the activities that cause it to flare. But try as we might, this casual observation is not enough to solve our condition. We need professional help, the latest medical imaging technology, and an affordable outpatient surgical center to make a lasting difference. Palmetto Bone & Joint can help! Schedule your appointment today by calling (864) 833-3046 or contacting us online.