Bengaluru: Three out 4 youngsters nowadays experience lower back pain which can be attributed on family history, posture, sedentary lifestyle and various other reasons but most of them suffer from non-specific lower back pain.
A 35-year-old software professional rushed to a private city hospital recently with complaints of back pain. “He was already experiencing the pain for two weeks that limited his basic functions. We evaluated him, but could not find any disc-related problem. But he had what we describe as acute lower back strain. He was recommended to take up core exercises, make alterations in his lifestyle along with postural correction and pain relief. He gradually recovered,” said Dr Mohan K. Puttaswamy, Consultant Reconstructive Orthopaedic Surgeon, Fortis Hospital.
There has been an increase in the number of such cases recently. Typically, 15-20 patients visit the orthopaedic departments of various hospitals with this problem every week. This is mostly due to bad lifestyle, like smoking, obesity and lack of physical exercises. “We are seeing more women than men with complaints of back pain. As women too have started to smoke, the incidence of back-related issues have seen a sharp increase among them as well. The most common condition is the degenerative disc, which occurs when discs become weak and can no longer cushion the vertebrae. While ageing plays in such a condition, smoking accelerates this process leading to severe back pain at very young ages,” Dr Puttaswamy said.
Experts said that the most common cause is the faulty posture – slouching, bending, etc -- that contributes in a big way. “In addition to medication and physiotherapy, lifestyle changes including regular exercise, maintaining ideal body weight, proper posture are also important. Physical therapy is frequently beneficial when a nerve is pinched by problems in the neck or lower back. Exercises can strengthen the back or core muscles and decrease or eliminate pressure on a nerve root,” said Dr Jayateerth Kulkarni, Consultant- Orthopaedic Surgery-Fortis Hospitals, Cunningham Road.
“Back pain is an extremely common issue and affects most people at some point of their life. For some, it can be a one-off or rare occurrence, but for others, it can be recurrent and long-lasting. Ensuring your back is strong and healthy is essential in preventing back problems,” said Dr Sujit Kumar, Consultant Neurologist, Apollo Hospital, Jayanagar.
Reasons for back pain in youngsters
- Lack of exercise
- Junk foods being the major part of the diet
- Lack of exposure to sunlight
- Devoting too much time using mobile phones and watching TV
- Sitting and studying for a long time