Low back pain also known as lumbago or lumbar back pain is caused due to mechanical and soft tissue issues. Such injuries can damage intervertebral discs resulting in compression of nerve roots and improper movement of spinal joints. Lumbar pain is considered to be chronic when it extends for more than three months. Lumbar spine pain treatment in Chennai can be managed either by home remedies before resorting for surgical intervention.
Injury to muscle (also known as strain) and injury to ligament (known as sprain) is caused due to improper lifting, wrong postures, insufficient exercise, fracture, sudden movements, sports injuries, damaged disc or arthritis. The strains and sprains occur due to overstretching.
Lumbar pain is caused due to lumbar herniated disc, degenerative disc disease, facet joint dysfunction, sacroiliac joint dysfunction, spinal stenosis, spondylolisthesis, osteoarthritis, scoliosis, trauma and compression fracture.
Herniated disc occurs due to age related wear and tear. The water content which was present in childhood decreases and discs become less flexible and starts shrinking. Consequently space between the vertebrae becomes narrower.
Degenerative disc disease might occur due to lifestyle factors, genetic predisposition or rarely due to major trauma like car accidents.
Lumbar facet syndrome is painful irritation in the posterior region of lumbar spine where sweeling occurs around irritated nerve roots. Little capsular tears occurring due to the trauma leads to partial dislocation of joint. Hypertonic contraction of surrounding muscles also occurs.
Some rare causes of lower back pain include infection, tumour and autoimmune diseases.
Though lumbar pain remedies like physical therapy reduce pain they do not change the source of pain. The physical therapy is accompanied by muscle relaxants and narcotic pain medications.
Muscle relaxants which perform as a depressant of central nervous system also increases mobility of tense muscles. Though it relieves pain from muscle tightness, it is not useful in chronic pain management.
Narcotic pain killers also known as opiods weaken signals sent to the brain and change one’s perception of the pain and are a part of lumbar pain remedies. Epidural injections injected with the guidance of fluoroscopy or live X ray reduces inflammation around the compressed nerve root and relieves pain temporarily.
Back braces, especially inelastic corset-style brace, in combination with physical therapy is found to accelerate healing and reduce pain.
Alternative treatments like manual manipulation (by chiropractor or healthcare provider), acupuncture, massage therapy and mindful meditation also reduce pain. Manual manipulation improves mobility and reduces stiffness, while acupuncture stimulates points and corrects body’s qi or life force which decreases pain and discomfort when needles are placed for an hour.
Massage therapy relives muscle spasms and increases blood flow to usher nutrients and oxygen to the damaged muscles. Mindful meditation reduces perception of pain which in turn minimizes depression, anxiety and sleeping problems.
Lumbar back pain can be managed at home with small lifestyle practices. Patient must move whenever possible or perhaps have a thirty minute walk every day. Being sedentary encourages weakness in the muscles around the spine and back, which in turn gives less support to the spine thus leading to long term pain. Hence walking is recommended.
Stretching and strengthening abdominal muscles supports the back and yields strength and flexibility which in turn relieves or prevents pain. Yoga, Pilates and Tai chi also strengthen muscles around the hip. Lying on the tummy and lifting arms and legs in flying position strengthens upper and lower back.
Maintaining good posture eases pressure on the lower back. Being conscious about avoiding habits like slouched shoulders and crane the chin forward, controls or avoids pain. While in desk job, eye levels should be with the top of the screen. One must also rise from the chair, stretch and walk regularly.
Maintaining weight with the help of a diet plan and exercise routine sourced from the doctor, can also minimize or avert back pain. Since tobacco weakens spinal bones and removes nutrients from the discs, smoking should be abhorred.
One can also use either heat or ice or both for pain relief. While ice is efficient in handling swells and inflammation, heat relaxes stiff or tight muscles. These must not be used if creams or ointments are applied on the skin.
Over the counter medications, medicated creams and supplements must be used only under doctor’s supervision. Rolled up towel, put under the pelvis while lying down could also stretch out tension in lower back and helps one to relax.
Lumbar spine pain management in Chennai includes surgical interventions like microdiscectomy, laminectomy and fusion surgeries are opted when pain exceeds 12 weeks despite employing non surgical methods in futile. These surgical procedures remove pain caused by pinched nerves. Minimally invasive procedures minimize recovery period and hospital stay besides lessening any possibilities of side effects.