Column If you led this kind of lifestyle as a youth, then you may have a potential bomb ticking in your lower back!
October 20, 2023
Back pain may have many causes, and sports and injuries, as well as our daily lifestyle habits play a major role in it and may lead to back pain in later life.
The lifestyle we once led in our younger days can be the cause to major back pain problems and come back to plague us in later days, even if the pain was only transient at the time.
In this article, we will discuss some of the causes of back pain that can be traced back to the lifestyles of our younger days.
Lifestyle factors that tend to lead to back pain
Sports are not the only cause of back pain, but most people who play sports on a regular basis also often complain of back pain.
- Baseball and soccer, which involve a lot of twisting at the waist.
- Gymnastics, swimming, etc., in which the hips are often bent.
Sports that involve a lot of bending, twisting, and contorting tend to put a lot of stress on the joints and muscles of the hips, which in turn increases the likelihood of back pain.
Various types of injuries
Noone is safe from sustaining an injury in daily life or when playing sports. In many cases, back pain may occur following a fall such as:
- Slipping on the floor, stairs, poolside, etc. and falling on one’s buttocks.
- Falling from a stepladder, bicycle, etc.
- Falls sustained while playing contact sports such as soccer, rugby, judo, etc.
In the above cases, back pain is more likely to occur at times when the lower back is struck or twisted.
Our lifestyle habits also influence the occurrence of back pain. These negative outcomes mainly stem from obesity, lack of exercise, and smoking.
One factor leading to obesity is one’s daily diet. Overeating and eating an unbalanced diet can lead to various lifestyle-related diseases. If your back hurts, getting one’s obesity in check may also lead to reduced back pain.
A lack of exercise routine, i.e., prolonged inactivity, may also trigger back pain. Sitting or lying down for long periods of time can lead to low back pain at some point in later life.
Having a smoking habit may also be a cause for back pain. Since smoking constricts the blood vessels, this will also apply to the capillaries surrounding the intervertebral discs, and without appropriate nourishment, the discs will start deteriorating, eventually leading to back pain.
Work / working environment
Occupations that place a heavy strain on the lower back may also cause back pain. Specifically, tasks that involve carrying heavy weights or work that requires to squat on a daily basis are more likely to lead to back pain. The “Guidelines for the Treatment of Low Back Pain 2019” lists transportation workers, cleaning workers, nurses, and caregivers as the occupations most likely to cause low back pain. *1
In addition, many people develop back pain due to their work environment. The “Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare’s Guidelines for Prevention of Back Pain in the Workplace” lists environmental factors such as temperature, floor and stair conditions, as well as interpersonal stress in the workplace as factors contributing to the occurrence of back pain. *2
Carrying heavy objects and always adopting the same posture, as well as job satisfaction and interpersonal relationships, are also associated with the onset or prolongation of back pain.
*1 Reference: “Guidelines for Low Back Pain Treatment 2019 (Revised Second Edition),” supervised by the Japanese Orthopaedic Association and the Japanese Society for Low Back Pain, 2020.
*2 Reference: Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, “Revision and Explanation of Guidelines for Prevention of Low Back Pain in the Workplace” 「職場における腰痛予防対策指針の改定及び解説」June 2013 (in Japanese).
Taking measures from an early age to prevent back pain
Lifestyle habits and other factors starting at a young age can also lead to back pain.
That is why it is important to take measures to prevent back pain from a young age.
For instance, it is crucial to build a body that is resistant to back pain through a systematic review of one’s lifestyle habits, be it exercising, stretching, all the way to how one relieves stress.
If transient back pain occurs, it is important not to leave it untreated, but to seek medical advice from a specialist at once. Low back pain can very well be an early symptom of diseases such as sciatica, herniated disc, osteoarthritis, spinal canal stenosis, disc degeneration, or spondylolysis.
Early detection and appropriate treatment can prevent the worsening of the disease, or even cure it completely.
Fundamental treatment for low back pain
Once back pain has occurred, it will be difficult to recover completely without first addressing the condition that causes the back pain, such as intervertebral disc degeneration or herniated disc.
Our clinic offers a treatment that repairs damaged intervertebral discs, called the Cellgel method.
With our Cellgel method, we inject a drug that fills in the cracks in the disc, which then becomes a gel and fills the cracks, thus providing a fundamental cure. It is characterized by the fact that the volume of the disc is not reduced, and the drug remains in the disc as a gel-like implant after treatment, thus preserving the disc.
If you are suffering from back pain, please consider a consultation at our clinic.