The researchers who count things and people report the issue of more prescriptions for painkillers and muscle relaxants, and more people complaining of back pain. It’s possible, of course, we’ve become a nation of hypochondriacs, prepared to reach for medication at the first sign of trouble. But, with the cost of prescription drugs being so high and health plans getting more restrictive, it’s probable people really are injuring and damaging their backs more often these days. So what exactly is going wrong? Let’s start with traffic accidents, slips and falls. With your back held together with muscles, tendons and ligaments, it’s quite easy to strain or tear something vital. It may be the impact or twisting awkwardly has stretched or tweaked the vertebrae in an unfamiliar direction. If so, the first step is rest. A little ice will help reduce any swelling and, if you have pain, one of the over-the-counter anti-inflammatories will help. But if the pain is still with you after four days, it’s time to admit the injury may be more serious. The most usual cause is that, because you fear pain, you change the way you stand or move. This puts an extra strain on the other muscles to compensate and can end up giving you more pain. The longer you favor your back in this way, the worse the problem is going to get because you will have unlearn all these unnatural movements. If in doubt, going to see the doctor early is the best decision you can make. Anything else risks longer term pain.
What are the other causes of pain? Damage to the one or more discs supposed to act as a shock absorber between the vertebrae can put pressure on the column of nerves passing through the spine. As in sciatica, this can cause shooting pains in the buttocks and legs. It’s possible the disc will just “pop” back into place with a little manipulation but, if it has herniated, i.e. the outer skin of the disc has broken, then surgery may be required. The same is likely if you have developed spinal stenosis, small spurs of bone that form as we get older. Surgery is the best response. With osteoarthritis, another condition related to age, the cartilage between the discs and the joints starts to break down. This causes swelling, stiffness and pain as inflammation grows more intense. Osteoporosis is a loss of bone density which makes them more likely to fracture. Calcium and vitamins help slow the loss of density. With fibromyalgia causing pain in the soft tissues, muscle relaxants like Carisoprodol in combination with physical therapy and, sometimes, antidepressants are the best responses.
So Carisoprodol is useful in all cases of physical injury from accidents and overexercise, and in cases of fibromyalgia. The plan is, first, to rest for a very short period of time and then resume movement. If you give into injury, your back will stiffen and cause more pain. With muscle relaxants to help and, more importantly, to reduce the risk of muscle spasms, guided exercise programs are the fastest route to a long-term cure.
Amanda Patterson is always ready to share his professional point of view on a topic. To see what Amanda Patterson has written about other things visit http://www.effectiveremedy.net/articles/back-pain.html.