The experience of back pain is the largest single cause of disability in the UK, accounting for 11% of the total disability – physical pain/problem – of the adult population.
There probably aren’t many people who don’t experience discomfort in their back at some point in their lives. But is yours serious? Do you need to consult with a GP, Physiotherapist or some other healthcare professional? What do you need to do about your pain and how long will it take to get better?
The infographic below forms the core of the article -ten facts relevant to every single one of us and which we could all do with being aware of:
From both professional and personal experience, I know that back pain can be debilitating and scary and have a real impact on your life. And from both professional and personal experience AND backed up by the evidence, the ten facts above are facts.
From a Physiotherapist perspective, gentle movement, specific exercises and avoiding anything that aggravates can be hugely helpful in promoting recovery in the vast majority of cases. Back pain can be a repeat offender; if you have experienced issues with your back before these can occur again in the future. But repeat offenders will often act in a similar way to their predecessors, being initially painful and uncomfortable but fading with time and the correct treatment. And the frequency and severity of repetitions can often be helped and reduced with the aforementioned gentle movement, specific exercises and avoiding the aggravations. It’s a while since I wrote specifically on back problems but I’ve written plenty on the myriad benefits of movement in general here, here, here… 🙂
Back pain can be serious but in the vast majority of cases it is not. If you are concerned or if you’ve been experiencing back pain for some time that doesn’t seem to be getting better, if the pain is severe or unrelenting or you’re experiencing numbness/weakness in your arms/legs or any bladder/bowel issues (related to the back pain) then do contact your GP or a Physiotherapist.
Below is short video where ten back pain patients present the information contained in the above infographic:
Context and real-life stories – about anything – can help you to see that ‘it’s not just you’. Below is another short video ‘Stories behind the facts’ that explores the back-stories – no pun intended – behind the ten patients in the above ‘Back pain facts’ video.