It is hard to describe how debilitating neck and back pain can be until you are a victim of it yourself. A back and neck specialist near me is the first person I would visit if I had discomfort in either place. Living your normal life is impossible, and you will have to put off many things that you will have wanted to do, and it will be important that you seek the help of a back doctor. It is within us not to get into this position in the first place as the pain often comes about due to the way we either stand or sit. If we can correct the mistakes, then the pain will not appear; but unfortunately, that is easier said that done. The best thing you can do is to find a way to relieve the pain when it occurs and follow any advice that you are able to get from a back doctor.
When you visit the back and pain clinic, you will get good advice, and this should at least allow you to get through the time before the real treatment can begin. One of the hardest things to do will be to move about. The problem is further compounded by the fact that it will also be difficult to get comfortable when sitting down and being still. Not doing anything is not going to be an option, as leaving things as they are will lead to the pain getting worse and probably spreading to the surrounding area as well. The reason for this is the reaction of the muscles. When there is pain, they stop working as normal and do all they can to protect the damaged area. This is why it can be painful to move. As a result, it will not only be the damaged area that hurts, but the surrounding area as well.
The causes of neck and back pain as determined by a back and neck specialist near me
There are a few things that happen each day that can suddenly lead to you being in pain. It may be done day after day until the one occasion when it goes wrong, and you must find a way to get rid of the pain. A back and neck specialist near me discusses the things that can cause the pain and offers quick fix advice as well as starts plans for the long-term treatment.
- Lifting heavy items – There is a way to do this and if not done correctly, damage can be caused. A back doctor will always ask if you have been lifting when you present with back or neck pain and will be able to advise the best way to do it in future.
- Posture – This can relate to sitting or standing and you need to do it properly always or you can be sure there will be many periods of pain.
- Weight – As with a lot of other problems, being overweight can lead to both neck and back pain. If not dealt with, it can become a long-term problem. The back and pain clinic may not have the staff there who can help with weight issues, but they are bound to be connected to someone who will be able to help you lose weight.
- Sport – Many different sports can lead to neck and back pain. It could be a fall, an unusual movement, or just a movement that you make again and again during the session. This does not mean that you can’t play the sport, just take precautions to limit the damage that can be done. A back and neck specialist near me can deal with ongoing pain issues and suggest ways to make sure that the same thing does not happen again.
- Smoking – There are a lot of problems that can be caused because of smoking and neck and back pain is another one. It is vital that smoking stops if there must be any surgery from a back doctor.
- Work – If you sit at a desk and use a computer all day, there is bound to be pain in the neck and back as you will have been sitting in an unusual position.
Reasons why you could be suffering from back pain and need a back and pain clinic
Once you know what has caused the pain, you need to know what damage has been done and ultimately what needs to be done to fix it. Firstly, however, the back doctor will need to know what you have damaged and there will be a few stages to this. They will have to ask you a lot of questions about your life in general, and then about what you think could have caused the pain. When did it start? What sort of pain is it? What were you doing just before it began?
After that there will be examinations by the back doctor. Initially it will be hands on from the back doctor just to see how you react to the area being touched, and then later it will be more in depth. It could be x-rays of an MRI scan, and after this, they can see what has been damaged and decide what they should tell you to do. A back and neck specialist near me will be able to arrange these tests.
What could lead you to a back and pain clinic?
When the pain is more centered on the back, it tends to be down to damage from a lumbar spinal disc. This sits between the vertebrae and the pain can come about because: –
- There is lumbar disc herniation – A disc leaks and causes an irritation to the nearby joints and muscles. The back is the cause of the pain, but it also radiates down the legs and if this pain is worse, it can be confusing as you would assume the legs were damaged. This is known as sciatica and a back and neck specialist near me will carry out all the checks required to ensure that there is no permanent damage caused before work can be carried out to improve things.
- Degenerated disc – This comes about just as you age. It is general wear and tear and the pain will be centered around the bottom of the back. With this, it will appear out of nowhere for a short period of time and then go just as quickly. The problem is that it will come back again so you will never be fully free of it and there could be frequent visits to the back doctor required.
- Osteoarthritis – This again comes about as a result of general wear and tear and is often job related. If the back is bent a lot, there can be nerve roots pinched and the area around the joint will be tender. Although it can affect people of any age, it can usually start to be an issue at around 60 years of age.
- Sacroiliac joint dysfunction – Where the hip and bottom of the spine meet, there is the risk of pain occurring either because of too much or too little movement. The lower back and the hips will become painful.
- Isthmic spondylolisthesis – Discs can move and when one reaches out over another, the vertebrae will strain and lead to pain. As well as lower back pain, there can be numbness and this itself can lead to the need for immediate treatment and possibly lifestyle changes.
- Spinal stenosis – The spinal canal narrows and leads to pain, and again this tends to affect the over 60s more than anyone else. A back and neck specialist near me will be able to carry out the required procedures when this is what has been diagnosed.
Trying to prevent neck and back pain at a back and pain clinic
When the pain lasts for a long period of time, it can be a bigger problem and the normal treatments of ice packs and over the counter medication will not be enough. Only a back and neck specialist near me will confirm this. If you do want to deal with it at home, then you can try using ice and medication, but this should never take the place of a visit to the back doctor’s office. If there has not been a recovery after 3 days, then it is time to give up self-treatment and seek the help of a back doctor professional
Neck and back pain and sleep
Once your sleep is disturbed because of neck and back pain, you will be at the stage where you are desperate to have it cured and will make an appointment with a back doctor. As you reach the deepest phase of a night’s sleep, the muscles will relax and at the same time the hormone that you need to cure the body is produced. Pain leading to lack of sleep will prevent the hormone from being produced and you will have a limited ability to heal yourself. A back and neck specialist near me will be able to give tips on how to sleep well and how to give yourself the best possible chance of healing.
Neck pain can be treated in the same way as back pain to a degree and before you commit yourself to surgery, there are many things that you can do at home if you take the advice of a back doctor. Some of them are the same as for back pain as often the causes are linked, while others will be specific for pain in the neck. Due to the risk of permanent damage, if the neck and back are not treated properly, the time between trying to help yourself and visiting a back and pain clinic should be shorter than it would be if there was pain anywhere else in the body.
The things you can do include over the counter medication. Paracetamol will be an ideal tablet to take but remember that there are guidelines as to how many to take at a time and how many should be taken over a 24- hour period. There are gels that can be rubbed on the neck. But, again, this should be a short term rather than a final solution and a back and neck specialist near me will be able to advise you on the ones to take and the combination of gels and medication that will be safe to take.
Your neck can become stiff if you are not using the right sort of pillow. A couple of days after changing you should find that the pain is subsiding. But, if it does not, then seek the advice of a doctor. A back and neck specialist near me would again say a few days should be enough time to see if there is an improvement. If there is none, then it is time for external help. Ice packs can again give relief, but they will only ease the pain and not stop the cause. You can try neck exercises, although these should be explained to you by a back doctor as they will know what you can do and what could end up making things worse.
A back and pain clinic will be just as clear about what you should not do as what you should do. A collar may immobilize the neck for a while, but most of the time it is the opposite that is needed. The neck needs to move so that the muscles do not seize up. Although something such as driving may not make the pain in your neck worse, the fact that you want to protect your neck may mean that it is not safe for you to drive. If you can’t turn your head properly, you cannot be sure of the location of other cars on the road and a back and neck doctor will suggest not driving.
All in all, a trip to the back and neck pain specialist near me is going to be on the cards. I am confident that I will be given all the advice I need to help me cope with the condition I am suffering from. I am sure you will too.