Have you ever felt a sharp, shooting pain in your lower back?
Maybe you were picking up something at work. Perhaps you were picking up your child.
Or maybe you have no idea what happened, but you can't move without pain in your lower back anymore.
You threw out your back. If you tell anyone you come across, they'll know exactly what you mean.
But what does it actually mean?
It means you have an acute onset of low back pain just below the ribs and above your pelvis.
The most likely thing that happens is a muscle strain, although it could be a bulging disk or herniation.
For the most part, throwing out your back is typically a temporary issue that will go away on its own over time.
There are things you can do to speed up your recovery and keep it from happening again.
In the article below, we will tell you everything you should know about throwing out your back.
Table of Contents
- Who Can Throw Out Their Back?
- How Exactly Does It Happen?
- How To Find Relief
- Movement Helps
- Preventing Future Accidents
- Contact The Team At Florida Spine and Injury
Who Can Throw Out Their Back?
If you are reading this, you can throw out your back.
80% of people will experience low back pain at some point in their life.
Anyone can develop acute back pain, but it becomes increasingly common as we get older.
The person who sits at their desk all day is just as susceptible to throwing out their back as someone working on a construction site.
Poor physical fitness is another risk factor.
If you aren't very active, your chances of throwing out your back are much higher than those who are active regularly.
Weekend warriors also have a higher chance of throwing out their back because they are sedentary all week and then become overly active on the weekends.
And if you've thrown out your back once, chances are very high that you will do it again.
How Exactly Does It Happen?
Most often, when someone throws their back out, it's due to lifting a heavy object or bending the wrong way, leading to a muscle strain.
The pain will vary from person to person, ranging from dull to intense, but will be localized around the lower spine.
If your pain happens to spread outward, that is usually a sign of a bulging or damaged disc.
You'll need to see a doctor if you are having severe back pain as the result of a fall, an injury of any kind, or a motor vehicle accident.
A few symptoms to look out for that are indicators you need to seek medical help are pain, weakness, or loss of feeling in your legs, severe pain that significantly limits your ability to do simple things, or bladder control issues.
If your pain lingers for over a month, you should see your doctor then, as well.
Most acute low back pain lasts less than a month, so if it lasts longer, something else could be wrong.
How To Find Relief
The pain you feel after throwing out your back usually goes away on its own, and the only thing you need to do is wait it out.
To ease and speed up your recovery, you should apply ice for the first three days after it happens, and then use heat after the third day.
You can use over-the-counter pain medications like Advil or Aleve as well.
They will help reduce inflammation, which can help ease your symptoms.
Just be sure to speak with a doctor before taking them, because these painkillers can create other complications in some patients. There are also some nutritional choices, like Turmeric for back pain relief.
If you'd rather avoid the painkillers, you can visit your chiropractor.
Your chiropractor will evaluate your injury and devise a treatment plan that will both treat your pain and keep it from coming back again.
You might think rest is your best option after you throw your back out, but staying active will help your recovery by keeping your blood flowing, increasing your flexibility, and prevent spasms.
Stay comfortable, but get up and move around at least every 30 minutes.
Walking and doing light chores are an easy way to keep moving, and doing light stretches will also be helpful.
Skip any high-impact activities while you're recovering, and be sure not to do any bending, lifting, or twisting.
You don't want to do anything that can injure your back even more.
Another idea is to try yoga for back pain.
Preventing Future Accidents
Moving your body properly is the key to preventing re-injury.
Practice good posture, learn proper lifting techniques, and push and pull objects correctly.
Your chiropractor can also teach you the best techniques to use when lifting and pushing or pulling.
Regular physical activity is also crucial.
Keeping your core and legs strong will help keep you from throwing out your back because those are your lifting muscles.
When those muscles are weak, you use your back to lift, opening yourself up for a back injury.
Flexibility is essential as well because tight muscles are more injury-prone than loose muscles.
Contact The Team at Florida Spine & Injury
Although most instances of low back pain, or throwing out your back, won't require medical attention, it is still a good idea to see a chiropractor.
Your chiropractor can develop a treatment plan for you that will help make your recovery process quicker and more bearable.
Also, since most people that throw out their back once will throw it out again, regular chiropractic treatments will help you avoid re-injury that will plague so many people for the rest of their lives.
If you've thrown out your back and you are ready to see a chiropractor, contact the team at Florida Spine & Injury.
They will have your back feeling as good as new, and they will help you keep it that way.