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Top 5 Causes of Neck and Back Pain and How to Avoid Them

Neck and back pain can be extremely frustrating and painful, and it can affect the way of life and in fact it can impact the overall well being. The neck is often referred to as the cervical spine. The spine is the organ that helps in rigidity, flexibility, and stability, everything all at once. 

But as they always say, any working mechanism can become faulty at some point. And for the spine to go faulty there are different reasons that you might need to know. 

What are the common signs of neck and back pain and how does it feel?

  • Continuous pain
  • Shooting neck and back pain that travels 
  • Pain in back of head and neck

Few other symptoms include:

  • Headache 
  • Inability to move your neck 
  • Stiffness in the neck and back.

What are the top 5 causes that might lead to neck and back pain?

Poor posture:

Neck and back pain often stem from poor posture. In our modern world of prolonged sitting, hunching over digital screens, and poorly designed working environments, it is not surprising that many of us experience discomfort in the area. 

Muscle strain and overuse:

Muscle strain due to overexertion, heavy lifting, or repetitive movements can cause neck and back pain. Even seemingly minor activities can lead to strain over time.

Stress and tension:

Stress and tension can manifest physically, leading to neck and back pain. When we’re stressed, we tend to tense our muscles, which can result in discomfort.

Sedentary lifestyle:

A sedentary lifestyle can weaken muscles and decrease flexibility, contributing to neck and back pain. Sitting for extended periods without movement can exacerbate the issue.

Accidents and injuries:

Injuries, such as falls, sports accidents, or car crashes, can result in neck and back pain. Even minor incidents can cause long-term discomfort if not properly treated.

What are the different medical conditions that might be the reason for neck and back pain?

Cervical disc herniation:

One of the most frequent causes of back and neck discomfort is disc herniation. No matter what you call it—it goes by several names, including pinched nerve and bulging or burning disc—the pain it causes can be severe and persistent.

When the inner portion of a neck disc leaks (herniates) fluid that presses against a surrounding nerve root, it is known as a cervical (neck) disc herniation.

The pressure on the nerve caused by the fluid leakage in the direction of the nerves leading to neck and back pain along with numbness and weakness.

Cervical and spinal stenosis:

Spinal stenosis is an unnatural narrowing of the bony duct that houses your spinal cord or nerves in your back. In contrast to many other spinal conditions, spinal stenosis usually develops slowly and progressively worsens over time, with the pain growing more frequent and severe over a number of years. Cervical stenosis in the neck exerts pressure directly on the nerves, causing neck and back pain.

Cervical strains and sprain:

It may be a minor sprain or strain if you experience abrupt onset of neck and back pain. You experienced a hard fall, and the pain hit you right away, so sometimes it’s clear. Sometimes the source isn’t really clear. The next morning, you may experience soreness because you overdid your exercise routine or just moved incorrectly. In either case, stiffness, neck and back pain that gets worse when you move, and neck stiffness are common symptoms.

Cervical or spinal osteoarthritis:

The degeneration of cartilage in joints or discs in the lower back is known as spinal osteoarthritis. In some instances, it might result in bone spurs that can cause severe neck and back pain.

Around 85% of people over 60 have osteoarthritis in the cervical spine, which is a prevalent condition in older age. 

What are the best tips to avoid neck and back pain?

Most times this neck and back pain can be avoided just by simple lifestyle changes. 

Get more exercise:

You might believe that resting and limiting exercise are the best ways to treat neck and back pain. The pain might improve with a day or two of rest, but any more time could make it worse. Regular exercise, according to experts, helps minimize muscle stress and inflammation.

Are there specific exercises that can help alleviate neck and back pain?

Yes, exercises like gentle neck stretches, core strengthening, and yoga can help relieve and prevent neck and back pain. Consult with a best physiotherapist for personalized recommendations.

Pay attention to your posture:

You can examine your posture by standing with your heels up against a wall. When you stand, your head, shoulders, and back should all be in contact with the wall. With one hand, you should be able to reach behind the small of your back. Move forward and assume a regular position now. If your posture changes, make the necessary adjustments right away.

Keep a watch on how you lift things:

Avoid stooping from the waist when lifting large objects. As you stand up, squat down with your knees bent, tuck in your stomach, and hold the object close to your body. Raise with your legs rather than your back. When lifting, avoid body twisting. Push large objects if you can rather than pulling them. The back is less taxed when pushing.

Is neck and back pain considered serious?

Consult a medical professional if you have tingling or numbness, severe pain that does not subside with rest and medicine, trouble urinating, weakness or pain in your legs, a fever, unintended weight loss, or pain following a fall. Neck and back pain frequently get better with time.

Can stress often lead to neck and back pain?

The physical repercussions of stress on the body might include mood swings, headaches, and changes in body weight. However, a frequently ignored side effect of stress is neck and back pain. Stressful events that occur frequently can eventually cause musculoskeletal issues in particular body areas.

When should I see a doctor for neck and back pain?

If your neck and back pain is severe, persistent, or accompanied by other concerning symptoms such as numbness or weakness in your limbs, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional promptly.

Important Takeaway:

At times, neck and back pain is a result of lifestyle issues like poor postures and also when exercises are performed in a wrong way. But they can be reduced or calmed down by doing simple exercises. Reach out to a physiotherapy hospital to get your neck and back issue treated with proper care and guidance.