Common problems associated with the spine

Back pain is a common problem associated with the spine and surrounding muscles. In today’s blog, I’m getting my geek on and looking at specific and non-specific back pain!

Specific back pain

Specific back pain is the diagnosis when the problem with the spine or surrounding muscles can be attributed to a particular condition. Table 1 shows conditions associated with specific back pain.

Table 1: Specific back pain

 

Non-specific back pain

Non-specific back pain is the terminology used when the definite cause or condition of the pain cannot be identified (2). Non-specific back pain may be associated with the following:

  • Stress – this can increase tension in the muscles which can contribute to back pain (1).
  • Standing, sitting or bending down for long periods of time (2).
  • Muscle strain from lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling loads that are too heavy (1, 2).
  • Overuse (1).
  • Muscle disorders (1).
  • Upper-crossed and lower-crossed syndromes (muscle imbalances identified by Professor Janda caused by prolonged static postural positions) (3)
  • Poor posture (2).
  • Pressure on a nerve root.
  • Obesity (having a body mass index [BMI] > 30) (2).
  • Non-specific pain persisting after minor back injury (1,2).

Non-specific back pain is the most common cause of back pain and many of us have experienced it during our lives. Before I started Dru Yoga, I had a lot of back, neck, and shoulder problems – I was always pestering for massages and I had a lot of physio, spots therapy, and osteopathy; nothing worked for very long. Having a regular Dru Yoga practice has really helped me to overcome my back problems. These days, I’m pretty much pain free and rarely get headaches (I used to get them all the time). Tomorrow, I’m going to talk about the research behind Dru Yoga and how it has helped me! See you soon. Om Shanti!

References

  1. Sullivan K, Royal College of General Practitioners. 5-minute Back Relief. London: Collins; 2007.
  2. Canvin R. Back pain [Internet]. 2013 [cited 2015 Feb 5]; available from: http://www.bupa.co.uk/backpain
  3. Striano P, Striano P. Anatomy of a Healthy Back: a Chiropractor’s Guide to a Pain-Free Back. Heatherton, Vic.: Hinkler Books; 2012.