Lower back pain - bad back
People often describe back pain as having a bad back. Back pain, especially in the lower part of the back, is very common. Most people will experience low back pain at some time in their life.
Low back pain can be caused by many different things, and it can be hard to work out why you have it. Most of the time, low back pain is caused from muscle strain. From twisting, lifting, or even being in the same position for too long.
Usually you’ll feel better in about a month without any treatment. But sometimes you might need help, from allied health professionals to get back to function.
It’s rare that low back pain back is caused, by something more serious like an infection, cancer, nerve, or bone damage. But there are warning signs, which mean you must see a doctor, or health worker straight away. The warning signs include things like, having a fever or feeling very cold and shivering. Having a fall or an injury to your back. Any new problems with passing fluids to the toilet. Feeling throbbing in your belly. Losing weight for no reason. Having weakness in one leg or feeling numb, over your bottom, and especially between your legs. If your back pain feels worse when you rest or lie down.
You should see a doctor, nurse, or health worker if you have low back pain, and you’re under 16 or over 50. You should also visit a doctor or nurse, if you have new back pain, and you have brittle bones from osteoporosis, or you’ve had any history of cancer. Don’t worry though, like I said, low back pain is usually caused from muscle strain, and most people will feel better in about a month. If you don’t feel better, or there are other signs, talk to a healthcare worker about it.
If you have low back pain, there’s plenty that you can do to feel better. The first thing is that you mustn’t lie down with it. That makes getting better harder, so it’s important to stay active and keep moving. Although it’s okay to do less activity for a few days. So push yourself just a little past the pain, so you can keep moving. This will help you get better faster, so you can get back to your family, and get back to normal life.
Sometimes a physiotherapist or exercise physiologist, may help you with some exercises, to help you improve with it, and also prevent the pain from coming back. You can also try hot or cold packs, and relaxation exercises, like deep breathing, to help you stay calm and help with the pain. You can take pain killers from the pharmacy, to help relieve the pain. It’s best to just take enough to help you stay active. Don’t take more than what you need, because it can be bad for you health as well. Your doctor or pharmacist can help you to know, how much to take. If your worried or unsure, go back to your medical service. They might decide to do more tests, to find out what’s going on, in case you need another type of treatment.
Last Reviewed: 09/07/2020
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