There are several possible causes for back pain in the lower, middle, or upper back. These include damage associated with normal wear and tear, fractures and other acute injuries, and underlying spinal conditions that can damage the disc, such as degenerative disc disease. Arthritis and other underlying medical conditions that affect the joints can also cause back pain and stiffness.
Doctors diagnose back pain based on certain factors, such as where it occurs, how often it occurs, what type of pain it is, whether there are other symptoms with it, and how severe it is. Diagnostic tests for back pain include a physical exam and imaging tests, such as X-rays and magnetic resonance imaging (MRIs). These tests allow doctors to determine what is causing back pain, which affects the type of treatment that would work best. Imaging tests can show exactly where damage is and how widespread it is.
Treatment for back pain depends on its cause, severity, and other factors. Mild back pain might subside with limited activity, cold packs, stretches, and over-the-counter pain relievers. For more severe back pain or for back pain that does not respond to self-care treatment, other options include prescription pain medication, physical therapy, and surgery.
Common goals of the Chiropractic Adjustment are improving functionality, reducing nerve irritability, and restoring range of motion in the back. Chiropractic care, including spinal manipulation, involves realigning the spinal discs in order to ease pressure on damaged or injured discs. These spinal adjustments can relieve lower back pain, upper back pain, or middle back pain by making it easier for oxygen and nutrients to get to damaged discs. Oxygen and nutrients are needed for proper healing. Complementary forms of treatment, such as physical therapy, can also enhance the effects of chiropractic care. Physical therapy helps build up the muscles in the back and promote greater flexibility, which helps reduce the risk of having recurring back pain.
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