Back pain is not just a symptom of aging. Anyone, of any age, in any physical condition, can and will likely experience back pain at some point in their life. So if you are experiencing back pain, don’t think that you’re alone. There are plenty of seventeen year-old athletes who experience back pain and thus seek the same medical care that you do for your own back issues.
While getting older can be a cause of back pain, as your body’s discs, joints, muscles and ligaments carry you through your life for a longer amount of time, and while many people experience their first back pain episodes while in their 30s and 40s, there are other top causes of back pain:
- Being overweight. When you’re carrying extra weight above your ideal body weight, that can put extra pressure on your spine, muscles and joints, leading to back pain.
- Not being physically fit. People who do not exercise on a regular basis, and thus lack good muscle tone and bone strength, often experience more back pain.
- Heredity. Some causes of back pain, such as ankylosing spondylitis, a form of arthritis that affects the spine, can have a genetic component.
- Your job. If your job requires you to lift heavy boxes, or push or pull heavy loads, you might experience greater back pain.
- Lifting heavy items. Or people. Like grandchildren who may be growing and getting heavier, yet you still want to lift them. And if you’re a caretaker of an ill relative, lifting them can aggravate your back as well.
- Sitting too much. If you sit at a desk or worktable for too many hours in a row, with poor posture and without getting up to stretch and walk around a bit, you might experience back pain.
- Smoking. If you’re a smoker, you may experience back pain, because your body might not be able to get enough nutrients to the discs in your back. You might also have a smoker’s cough that puts pressure on your body and affects your back. And smokers are also slow to heal, so your back pain might be longer-lasting.
- Other diseases. Some types of arthritis and cancer can cause back pain.
In short, anyone can get back pain. And perhaps you see yourself in several of the above causes, so take steps now to help prevent back pain or help lessen your back pain symptoms.