Common Causes of Back Pain

Woman suffering from back pain

What's Causing Your Back Pain?

Nearly everyone has back pain from time to time. In fact, 60 to 70 percent of people living in industrialized countries have experienced low back pain, according to World Health Organization estimates. Back pain can occur for many reasons, including these common causes.

Herniated Disc

Flexible discs located between the vertebra in your spine help hold your spine together and act as shock absorbers when you move. A herniated disc occurs when the gel-like center of the disc protrudes through the tough, outer coating. The bulging disc can press against nerves in your spine, triggering back pain. Wear and tear due to aging is a common cause of herniated discs, but they can also occur as a result of an injury.

Spinal Stenosis

Wear and tear may also cause spinal stenosis, a condition that occurs when the spine narrows and presses on nerves. In addition to back pain, spinal stenosis can also cause numbness, tingling or weakness in your arm, leg, foot, or hand.

Spondylosis

Arthritis can affect any bone in your body, including those in your back. When arthritis occurs in the spine, it's called spondylosis.

Sprains or Strains
Did your pain start after you lifted something heavy, fell, or started a new, intensive workout program? You may have strained or sprained the muscles or ligaments in your back.
Scoliosis
You may be more likely to experience back pain if you have scoliosis, a condition that causes an abnormal sideways curvature of the spine. Children are most often affected by scoliosis, but older adults may develop it due to wear or tear or injuries.
Sciatica
Sciatica occurs when the sciatic nerve in your spine becomes irritated. Irritation can be caused by a herniated disc, bone spur, or even spinal stenosis. Pain from your back usually radiates to your buttocks and leg if you have sciatica. Other symptoms can include numbness or weakness in your leg.
Disc Degeneration
As you get older, the discs that cushion your spine can begin to break down, dry out, and become less flexible. If you have disc degeneration, you might notice pain in your lower back, buttocks, or thighs.
Osteoporosis
Osteoporosis, a disease that weakens your bones, may cause painful fractures in your vertebrae. If you have a fracture, you may notice that your back feels worse when you stand, walk, or bend.
Other Back Pain Causes
Pain in your back doesn't necessarily mean that you have a problem with your spine. Fibromyalgia, kidney stones, endometriosis, gallstones, pancreatitis, and other diseases and conditions can also trigger pain in your back.
What You Can Do About Back Pain
These tips can help you manage your back pain:
  • Use Proper Lifting Techniques. Use your legs, not your back, to lift heavy objects. Wait until someone else is available to help with lifting if the package or object is very heavy.
  • Lose Weight. Excess weight strains your back and can increase back pain. Losing weight just might be a simple way to ease your pain.
  • Stop Smoking. Smokers are at increased risk of back pain, according to a study published in the Cureus Journal of Medical Science in 2016. In a national health survey, only 23.5 percent of non-smokers reported back pain compared to 36.9 percent of current smokers.
  • Exercise. Exercise keeps your back flexible and decreases pain and stiffness. Weight-bearing exercise is particularly important, as it keeps your bones strong and may decrease your risk of fractures due to osteoporosis.
  • Visit Your Chiropractor: Chiropractors offer a variety of therapies and treatments that relieve back pain naturally, including spinal manipulation and mobilization, massage, soft tissue manipulation, ultrasound therapy, and electrical nerve stimulation treatment.
Are you struggling with back pain? Give our office a call and schedule a convenient appointment.
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Testimonials

  • "Dear Dr. Zabawa,
    I want to thank you for being my #1 healthcare provider.
    I have been under chiropractic care for 40 years and of the many chiropractors I have been treated by,
    you and your precise atlas adjustment are the best.
    It really is gentle and effective. I've had migraines, scoliosis, herniated L4-L5, and sciatica -
    and in the 11 yrs of being under your care I have had no problems or re-occurrence of any
    of my former symptoms.
    You are the best and I thank you."
    Judy B.
  • "Hi, I'll always remember the wonderful things you've done for me at Atlas Chiropractic of Sarasota.
    I thank Dr. Zabawa for getting me up and running!
    My last chiropractor said there was nothing else they could do for me, and I felt as if my life was over.
    (I couldn't even play video games without pain.)
    Now that I've been introduced to your atlas adjustments: I'm lifting weights again, working (making money),
    and yes - even playing video games. Wow!
    THANK YOU!!!!!"
    Lyle H.
  • "We've had 40 years of various types of chiropractic therapies (sometimes weekly),
    but have never felt truly aligned until now."
    Marsha & Alain M.
  • "I was diagnosed with scoliosis as a child, and through good habits & care have managed to avoid surgery.
    About 30 years ago my research into spinal maintenance led me to upper cervical chiropractic
    (specifically orthospinology) over general chiropractic.
    This is just phenomenal. When my atlas is adjusted and my spine is aligned, it is amazing how good I feel.
    It helps the nerves and muscles of the body function so well, and I believe it has been the key to slowing
    the spinal degeneration caused by my scoliosis.
    * And it's so non-invasive! *
    Now that I live in Sarasota, I am so glad to be under the care of Dr. Zabawa.
    It's no surprise that he came highly recommended. I have always been impressed with
    the professionalism and care I've received at Atlas Chiropractic of Sarasota.
    It compares to anywhere in the country."
    Kyle Ann M.
  • "Very thorough. Quick recovery after a car wreck!"
    Nathaniel B.
  • "For 3 years I had been having headaches every day.
    I even went to a neurologist for my headaches, but he said they were a condition of menopause :(
    A friend suggested going to Dr. Z because of the unique procedure he uses and the great results.
    Dr. Z took care of me and within about 3 months my daily headaches were gone.
    What a relief!
    I don't think I've had one since :)"
    Allaesia M.
  • "I lived in pain with an undiagnosed broken back for 23 years since a horse & buggy accident as a teenager.
    When I injured my back again as an adult, the x-rays showed that I had fractured a vertebra back then,
    as well as this time.
    I received some help from going to regular chiropractors in recent years, but still lived in pain.
    I am so thankful that I found Dr. Zabawa.
    After 35 years and lots of pain, within a month or so
    I was PAIN FREE!
    It is amazing how such small adjustments to the atlas vertebra in my neck have made such
    a big difference to my life.
    To this day, I come in periodically to maintain my new found health.
    Praise and glory to God."
    Mary T.