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Lower Back and Leg Pain | Causes, Treatments and Tips

back pain tips

 

Introduction

Back pain is a common problem in both men and women these days. The pain range in intensity, i.e., from a mild ache to an intense, chronic pain can sometimes lasts for weeks, months or years. Lower back pain is often caused by degenerative disk, lumber issues or muscle strain. In some cases, the back pain can broaden to other areas of the body, explicitly to your legs. Common symptoms associated with leg and back pain include tingling, limited mobility, burning sensations, and more.

In this article, you will learn about some of the common causes of lower back and leg pain and its treatment guide. Check the guide below.

Degenerative/Dehydrated Disk

With age our spinal disc show signs of wear and tear but this does not mean that everyone of us will have degenerative disc disease. In our bodies spinal discs work as shock absorbers between the bones of the spine. These are designed to assist the rear planes of motion. Every disc has 2 parts, first outer layer called toroid fibrosus which contains nerves. If the disc tears around this area, it can be quite painful. second part called nucleus pulposus. This part contains proteins and if there are some issues with these proteins parts of the disc, they can cause sever back pain. Once we have disc injury, it cannot repair itself and the back pain will come and go over an extended amount of time period. The treatments of this problem will be depend on the severity and nature of the damage. I am suffering from this problem myself. I have back pain which travel through my legs. I have been on medicine for quite a long time now and have been given Co-codamol, Naproxen, Tramadol, Pregabalin and Amitriptyline. I am regularly visiting my physiotherapist and also taking occasional acupuncture. There are also options of surgical interventions and disc replacement depending on the severity of the problem.

Lumbar Herniated Disk

It is the common reason behind the lower back. This happens when the jelly or nucleus is pressed out from a person’s spinal disk during a tear. The ruptured disk then puts force on a spinal nerve, leading to severe numbness, pain, and sometimes weakness. Some other prominent symptoms associated with this are back spasms, leg muscle weakness, compression of the spinal cord, numbness in the foot and leg, decreased ankle or knee reflexes, and more.

The treatment of the problem varies depending on the severity of the damage. In case of a minor problem, the doctors or physicians might recommend pain relief medicines and proper rest. However, sometimes the doctor tells patients to go with acupuncture treatment. Your doctor may advise surgery or physical therapy if you do not see any improvement within a few weeks after the acupuncture procedure.

Arachnoiditis

It is a membrane that is responsible for protecting spinal cord nerves. Any irritation or Inflammation in the arachnoid can leads to pain disorder arachnoiditis. The individuals who suffer from this issue also experience pain in their legs and lower back. Some prominent symptoms include twitching, muscle cramps, bladder dysfunction, bowel issues, numbness or tingling in the legs, and more.

However, treatments focus on pain management. The doctor prescribes pain medication to such patients or recommends physiotherapy sessions and exercise for improved results.

Piriformis syndrome

The piriformis is a flat muscle in your glutes near the top of a hip joint. Its job is to stabilize your hip joint properly. It is responsible for rotating and lifting the thigh away from the person’s body.

Piriformis syndrome occurs when the piriformis muscle compresses the sciatic nerve in your body. Some common symptoms include numbness in the buttocks, tingling, pain in the lower leg area and more.

The treatment usually involves pain relief and evading pain triggers such as definite sitting positions and practicing some demanding physical activities. The therapists or doctors normally recommend rest and physical therapy to people who suffer from this issue. All this can help in increasing your body’s mobility. However, in case of some severe circumstances, Surgery is suggested.

Tips for lower back and leg pain

Based on my personal experiences and research, I believe  one can manage to live with or get rid of back and leg pain by following some of the  helpful techniques below:

  • Exercise - It may feel difficult or unnatural to exercise while in pain, but as per my own personal experience, too much rest can worsen your leg and back pain. You should encourage yourself to  start your recommended exercises as soon as possible even it is just for 1 minute per time. Longer you wait to get into the exercises, harder it will become. Once you get into the habit of exercise, believe me you will feel good about yourself and your pains but remember staying consistent is the key here.

  • Ice and heat - Keep the ice and heating pad at your side. Both heat and ice therapy can provide instant relief of sciatic nerve pain. I use hot water bottle for my back pain. I also use Deep Heat rub cream and Ice cold gels occasionally. Stretching - It may seem trivial but try to Incorporate gentle stretching whenever you get some free time into your daily routine. This amazing technique helps improve your range of motion and spinal flexibility while building spinal and core strength. 

  • Posture - Refresh your sitting posture from time to time. It is also one of the common reasons behind the problem. People nowadays spend most of their time working on laptops and on computers and change their posture less.

  • Private Massages - I personally experiences few hours of pain relief after visiting massage centers but remember depending on your living area these centers can be expensive in cost.

The above-listed tips may provide significant help to people who suffer from lower back and leg pain issues.

Conclusion

Easing the extreme pain in the lower back and leg pain does not always entail a severe treatment approach. One can easily relieve the pain at home with ice and heat therapy, gentle exercise, eating recommended medicines/multivitamins, and sitting in a proper posture. However, some people do not take their low back and leg pain seriously, leading to serious health issues in the future.

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