When Is Your Back Pain Cause for Concern?

As estimated 65 million people in the United States experience at least one episode of back pain in their lifetime and as many as 16 million live with chronic pain daily.

As a world-class spine surgeon, Gbolahan Okubadejo, MD, FAAOS, recognizes how any amount of back pain can interfere with your quality of life and your ability to get things done. Dr. Bo specializes in a variety of therapeutic and surgical treatments to alleviate the root cause of pain in your upper and lower back.

There’s no reason you have to live with back pain; but if you’ve been putting off an evaluation, it may be time to check in with Dr. Bo at The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care.

Why you have back pain

A number of underlying medical conditions may be at the heart of your back pain. Often, overuse of the muscles that support your spine leads to episodic pain.

If you haven’t experienced a direct injury to your back, such as from a fall or auto accident, your pain may be the result of:

You may also experience electric shock-like pain that you feel with certain movements due to pressure from a spinal abnormality or inflammation that presses on your sciatic nerve.

This condition, known as sciatica, occurs when too much pressure is placed on the sciatic nerve, the large nerve that provides sensations to your buttocks, hips, and legs. Pressure can also cause numbness and tingling that radiates beyond your lower back.

It’s time to seek medical attention for your back pain

Back pain that originates from muscle overuse often resolves on its own with rest, over-the-counter pain relievers, and anti-inflammatories. You may also benefit from heat therapy to relax your muscles or ice therapy to reduce inflammation along the spine.

When it comes to chronic back pain, it’s important that you seek a timely diagnostic evaluation with Dr. Bo to prevent additional complications. Chronic back pain is pain that lasts for six months or longer, or pain that worsens even with home treatment.

Another indicator that you may need medical care for your back pain is changes in your mobility. When your back pain makes it difficult to exercise, work, or stay physically active, you should request an appointment with Dr. Bo for an accurate diagnosis.

Without the right treatment plan, your back pain can get worse and lead to a disability. Dr. Bo offers comprehensive treatments that focus on not only relieving your pain but also protecting your long-term spine health.

Understanding your treatment options

At The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care, you can expect to receive a care plan that Dr. Bo customizes to your specific needs.

Conservative therapies available include steroid injections to reduce inflammation in your spine that presses on surrounding nerves. You may also benefit from physical therapy and at-home exercises to stretch and strengthen your spine and help your body heal naturally.

Surgery is usually a last resort for treating chronic back pain. Dr. Bo may consider you a candidate for spine surgery if you have chronic pain from a herniated disc, severe arthritis, or a degenerative spine condition that isn’t getting better with conservative treatments.

Don’t neglect your spine health. Seek treatment when you can no longer treat pain at home by requesting an appointment online or by calling The Institute for Comprehensive Spine Care office nearest you today.

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