Facts about Pain in the Back

Many people suffer from pain in the back at some point in their lives. This can be very debilitating and affect us in our daily lives. The NHS estimates that up to 8 out of 10 people are affected at some point in their lives.

Different Types of Pain in the Back

It’s really important to try and understand pain – it is a response by your body to let you know something is not working properly. There are many different types and they all need different treatments to try and resolve your specific problem.

  • Sharp, stabbing, hot pain is sometimes severe enough to stop us in our tracks and this type of pain should not be ignored.
  • Likewise, pain with changes in sensation or distant function demands immediate medical attention.
  • Lower back pain accompanied by extreme bowel or bladder dysfunction should ring alarm bells and you should seek urgent medical care. Visit your local A&E or an emergency GP appointment.
  • Achy, nagging, dull pain is less of a concern but it is still important to get checked out. It may hinder your sleep and daily activities. None of us perform at our best when our brain is having to process ‘noise’ from constant pain messages. This type of pain is more of a warning that you have done something wrong and put a strain on your system.

Rheumatoid or inflammatory disease processes

Rheumatoid ArthritisPsoriatic ArthritisCrohn’s Disease generally follow a pattern of inflammation and symptoms followed by periods that are asymptomatic (without pain for example). Pain that is usually diffuse and hot in nature, often following a pattern of starting in the hands or feet but on both sides at the same time. These types of arthritis are commonly hereditary. Blood tests are usually the only way to get an accurate diagnosis but false negatives are possible. The blood tests can come back negative simply because the disease is present but not active. During periods of inflammation intense physical therapy is not advisable, likewise anything other than a gentle range of motion movements.

Understanding the Anatomy

Understanding the anatomy of the back can help us identify where the pain is originating from and what may be causing it. In another blog, I’ll explain how our backs are constructed in greater detail to help guide you in identifying, resolving, and treating your back problems.


Do you need help with managing pain in the back?

Should you need help with pain or mobility surrounding your back, then get in touch and make an appointment. Whether it’s your first time being treated, or a maintenance appointment.