Back Pain – Muscle Problem Or Nerve Damage?

Back pain can be a minor ache caused by a weekend of throwing a baseball with your kids or it can be serious requiring MRIS, physical therapy, drugs and even surgery. Most people when they experience back pain wonder if it’s a muscle problem or nerve damage. Let’s look at the difference between muscle pain and nerve pain?

Of course if you wake up hurting the last thing on your mind is wondering whether the pain is caused by a muscle pull or nerve damage. However if you are like me and the pain persists you start worrying if it can be more than just a sore muscle.

Let us first look at muscle problems and back pain. There are four major muscles in the back starting with the Sternocleidmastoid running down the neck, to the Trapezius in the upper back, the Latissmus dorsal running down the back and the Gluteus Maximus. Any of these muscles can be damaged by overwork, quick jerking movement like in an accident, or by over extension. When and where muscles are weak or out of balance and injury can occur causing back muscle pain. Usually rest, a little ice and an over the counter pain killer will do the trick. Once the pain has gone away an exercise program specifically designed to strengthen the back muscles will go a long way to prevent back problems in the future.

Nerve damage can signal a more severe back problems. Nerve damage can be caused by an accident or a herniated disc or a damaged muscle pressing against a nerve root. In the lower back nerve problems usually means the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body running from the lower back and down both legs. When a disc, or bone or muscle presses against the nerve pain can radiate down a leg or both legs right to the feet. Nerve damage will often involve your doctor, physical therapy and possibly surgery to relieve the pressure on the nerve.

Whether it’s muscle damage or nerve damage back pain should not be taken lightly. If the pain continues for more than a couple of days it is time to see your doctor to determine what type of back pain problem you have. Once this is known the doctor can decide on a program designed to treat the muscles or nerve. This treatment can range from anyway from taking a pain pill an a couple days of rest to surgery.

In my case the pain was caused by a lifting accident and nerve damage. I believe it is important to know and understand what is causing your back pain and take an aggressive approach to stopping the pain and strengthen the muscles. Strong core muscles support the spine and can alleviate nerve damage. Nobody likes back pain and yet so many people ignore their bodies through lack of exercise and/or weight and then wonder way they are suffering from an aching back.

Source by Pete A Turner

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