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The Real Reason for Lower Back Pain

By Debra Rodzinak

When the muscles and ligaments of the lower back are damaged, acute pain can develop in the lower back. The extensor, flexor, and oblique muscles make up a large group of muscles that support the spine.  The soft tissues that allow us to bend forward, lift, arch, and twist surround the spine.   

Muscle Strain

The lumbar area of the back is the lower part of the back that curves inward and connects at the pelvis. This part of the back receives the most wear-and-tear and is prone to injury and strain. When a muscle in this area is overstretched or torn, the muscle fibers are damaged. This is referred to as a lumbar muscle strain. If one of the ligaments in the back is torn, a sprain occurs. 

Causes of Muscle Strain

Lifting a heavy object, falling, twisting during a lift, or playing sports might cause a lumbar muscle strain. When the abdominal muscles are weak, activities that involve using the lower back are more prone to injury. Direct injury during a fall that injures the muscle fibers can cause immediate strain. Overstretching the muscles in the back from improper lifting techniques can also cause strain. Many sports involve stretching or injuring the muscles of the lower back: Football, soccer, golf, even basketball can cause an injury leading to sprain of the lower back. 

Symptoms of Muscle Strain

When the lumbar muscles are strained, the lower back can be tender, pain can be in the lower back that does not flow into the leg, or a sudden sharp pain can be felt in the back. Many times, muscle spasms will accompany the injury because the body is trying to stabilize the area that is injured.

In a very short amount of time, acute pain can be resolved. However, flare-ups can persist for weeks after the injury occurs. If the back muscles are not used for a few weeks, atrophy can occur and cause even more pain.

Treatment for Muscle Strain

Treatments for lower back muscle strain include ice and heat therapy, exercise, and chiropractic treatment.  If you are suffering from lower back muscle strain, drop by The Joint for a gentle adjustment with one of our expert doctors.  With no appointment times to remember or long insurance forms to fill out, The Joint makes recovery from muscle strain easy and stress free.

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