Back pain and stiffness is one of the most commonly felt discomforts amongst many adults. Whether it’s from sleeping on a bad mattress, having poor posture or an injury, back stiffness is a pretty ubiquitously experienced ailment. But what if that stiffness isn’t actually what it appears or feels to be? A new report states that this very common occurrence that feels like back tightness or stiffness may be something else entirely.
A researcher in South Australia stated that the correlation between actual back stiffness and what people perceive to be back stiffness is often very different. When the stiffness of a particular part of the back is gauged, it’s not often reported as such by testing options. Tasha Stanton, the lead author and researcher, suggested that maybe the feeling of stiffness is just a protective construct that is created by the nervous system. It could very likely be the body’s way of protecting itself from additional strain or injury.
Understanding The Issues
Lower back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide, so back pain is obviously something that affects countless people. This is also why something that may seem as simple and common, such as the presence of back pain, should be taken seriously so that it doesn’t further escalate and become something that is almost impossible to manage. Another issue that doctors and researchers have found when it comes to the experience of back stiffness is that words are incredibly important. Sometimes when they are used incorrectly, it makes the diagnosis and treatment process that much more difficult.
Pain is a very misunderstood entity. While the presence of doctors and chiropractors can be helpful in managing the different types of pain you may be experiencing, getting to the root cause and understanding how everyday stressors and triggers may exacerbate the issue is incredibly important. If certain measures are taken early enough, then the complete decline of the muscles may not be as drastic.
Procedures such as physical therapy are also helpful when there is any type of back or neck pain that is readily experienced. There is an obvious issue with pain killers in this country, and in various parts of the world, so relying on popping pills will undoubtedly lead to more trouble than relief. Obviously if the pain is unbearable, there are less potent, non-habit-forming drugs that can be used.
Finding The Real Problem
A descriptive word such as “stiff” can be used to describe anything. It can be used to describe dull pain, a hurt muscle, a random ache, the result of sleeping on a mattress wrong, and a whole host of other causes. These aren’t necessarily all the same thing nor are they all as serious as one another. This is why using that word to describe what’s going on in your back isn’t necessarily helpful.
Ascertain the problem as completely as you possibly can. Figure out when the sensation started and try to get to a point where you can describe exactly what it feels like as accurately as possible. It could be the difference between it becoming a long-standing problem that completely compromises your quality of life and ability to work and it being treatable. Learn how to properly describe and manage your back pain. Saying something is “stiff” may actually just mask the problem.