The Most Common Back and Spine Conditions

Your back and spinal health plays a large role in your overall comfort. Whether you’re sitting, standing, or participating in something more active, the state of your back can dictate how you feel at any given time. Back conditions are fairly common, and millions of individuals develop discomfort of some sort in this region of the body every year. Consider some of the most common back and spine conditions and how to identify them.

Herniated Disc

Spinal discs act as shock absorbers for activity between the vertebrae. As the spine flexes, these discs protect the bone from sudden or harsh impact along the spinal cord. Should a disc crack open, the cushioning gel within can leak out, resulting in a herniation. While this condition can lead to pain in the spine itself, it’s better known for causing symptoms to develop in the neck and shoulders. If you have persistent pain in these areas, don’t rule out a spinal issue.

Sciatica Flare-Ups

The sciatic nerve sits at the base of the spine and controls sensation in one or both legs. Typically, the nerve performs as normal and you may feel perfectly comfortable. But if you develop a condition that places pressure on the nerve, such as a bone spur or herniated disc, you could be at risk for intense pain. Sciatica is a regular occurrence of pressure on the sciatic nerve, causing pain to radiate from your back and down your legs. Taking note of how you move and which motions trigger the pain can help with diagnosing the root of the issue.

Lumbar Spinal Stenosis

Another common back and spine condition to know about is spinal stenosis. This diagnosis is especially prevalent in older individuals, as it deals with a narrowing on the spinal column that often comes with age. When this happens, pressure is placed on the spinal cord and can cause severe pain in many areas of the body. Lumbar spinal stenosis is common, but there are still several myths about the condition circulating among patients. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to treat spinal stenosis and mitigate your symptoms.

Scoliosis

Some conditions can develop as the spine forms, often occurring as children grow into their adolescent years. Scoliosis is an issue where the spine starts to curve sideways rather than straight; this formation can cause several different levels of pain depending on its severity. Additionally, while this condition is treatable, it can’t be fully cured. Therefore, older individuals can experience lasting impacts from scoliosis.

If you’re experiencing pain in your back, it’s crucial to talk about it with a specialist. Any of these conditions can worsen without proper treatment, so don’t wait another day to look after your back and spinal health.