Backache, lower back pain, or lumbago is a common disorder involving the muscles, nerves, and bones of the back. On the basis of the duration of pain, it is classified as acute, sub-chronic, and chronic. Acute pain lasts less than 6 weeks, sub-chronic for 6 to 12 weeks, and chronic if persists for more than 12 weeks. Mostly, the back pain is believed to be due to mechanical problems such as muscle or joint strain.
Ayurvedic Description Of Backache
Ayurveda considers all spinal pain and disorders to happen due to the imbalance of SamanaVayu. Located at the navel, SamanaVayu governs Agni; the Agni refers to the digestive fire or the fire of purification in Ayurveda. This fire burns adequately when Pranaand ApanaVayu unites in SamanaVayu. Any disturbance in this Agni causes the imbalance of SamanaVayu and hence the pain and disorders related to the spine seen in patients.
- Muscular back pain
- Shooting or stabbing pain
- Pain that radiates down the legs
- Limited flexibility or range of motions of the back.
Causes and Risk Factors
1. Muscle/Ligament strain-
Repeated heavy lifting or a sudden awkward movement may strain back muscles and spinal ligaments, and constant strain on the back may cause painful muscle spasms.
2. Bulging/Ruptured disks-
Disks act as cushions between the bones (vertebrae) in the spine. The soft material inside a disk can bulge or rupture and press on a nerve. However, one can have a bulging or ruptured disk without back pain.
Osteoarthritis can also affect the lower back. In some cases, arthritis in the spine can lead to a narrowing of the space around the spinal cord, thereby, causing a condition called spinal stenosis.
4. Skeletal irregularities–
Scoliosis is a condition in which the spine curves to the side and may also lead to back pain, but only if the scoliosis is severe.
5. Age Factor-
The risk of back pain increases with age.
6. Sedentary lifestyle –
Lack of workout, sitting or standing in a one posture for long duration can lead to back pain.
7. Weight lifting –
Carrying too much weight puts extra stress on the back and causes back pain.
8. Psychological conditions –
People prone to depression and anxiety complain more of back pain.
Self Care Tips
- Gentle massage provides some relief by stretching tight muscles and ligaments.
- To decrease inflammation, icing and heating can be done alternatively and should be done under the guidance of an expert.
- Do not self-medicate with anti-inflammatory pain-killing drugs, always consult a doctor before starting the back pain treatment.
- Do not restrict the body movements forcefully.
- Try to avoid bending, or lifting as these movements put extra stress on the back.
- While sitting, place a small pillow, a rolled-up towel, or a lumbar roll in the curve of the back for extra support, doing this daily before going to bed is very helpful in relaxing back muscles.
- Avoid wearing shoes with high heels.
Since lower back pain is acute to chronic. So, it takes time as per the condition of the patients to get rid of pain properly. Ayurvedic medicines are very beneficial and effective and they don’t have adverse effects unlike painkillers, which are prone to damage the liver and cause acidity as a result of prolonged use.