Spine Animations

Spine Animations

Tip of the Week

Poor posture can damage the spine and its associated muscles and ligaments. A hunched stance places abnormal stress on muscles and ligaments, causes backache and fatigue, and can even cause the spine to become fixed in an abnormal position.

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What’s That Spasm All About?

liftingThose uncontrollable twitches or contractions within the muscles of your lower back are most commonly known as back spasms. These spasms can come in a variety of forms, with differences in frequency and severity. Getting professional treatment from an experienced back pain doctor for your spasms can:

  • Stop the spasms from bothering you now
  • Prevent any further injuries from occurring

Although you may experience different kinds of muscle spasms in your back, the best thing you can do to help yourself is make an appointment with your spine doctor at the Southeaster Spine Institute (SSI). Your physician there can diagnose your spasms to find out what’s really going on. SSI has diagnostics and treatment facilities in the same place.

In the case of severe and recurrent spasms, you need immediate attention. Identifying what may have initially caused your back issue helps your doctor determine the appropriate treatment for you. And there are many non-surgical options available that can effectively treat chronic back spasms. In fact, fewer than 10 percent of SSI patients require surgery.

Causes of Back Spasms

Spasms can range in severity and frequency. How your spasms started likely affect how much pain and discomfort they inflict on you. As expected, severe back injuries can create severe and frequent spasms. Some common causes of spasms include:

  • Heavy lifting, especially when improperly lift something
  • Activities that put strain on the muscles of your lower back
  • Sports injuries to your middle back, lower back or legs
  • Muscles that twitch to protect your back from a potential strain
  • In response to a more serious anatomical problem
  • Previous medical conditions

Weak abdominal muscles – which provide support to your core spinal column – make your back more susceptible to the lower back injuries that can lead to spasms in your back. Other medical conditions that may cause muscle spasms include arthritis or a ruptured or bulging disk. These conditions put pressure on your spinal cord, which in turn causes even more dysfunction – like back spasms.

Diagnosis and Treatment

In the case of severe back spasms, your SSI physician first determines the source of your problem before providing the best recommendations for the treatment that can help you. Be sure to tell your doctor in detail about any and all symptoms you’ve been experiencing. Include information about the:

  • Severity of your pain
  • Frequency of the spasms
  • When they started
  • What you’re doing to relieve the pain

If your spasms are a result of stress on your muscles from a sports injury, your treatment may be as simple as alternating between ice and heat on your lower back. This basic remedy helps reduce inflammation and improve the blood flow to enable healing. At SSI, your doctors always choose the least invasive treatment to help relieve your pain as efficiently as possible. Stronger treatments are only needed if the more conservative ones aren’t effective.

Taking medications such as muscle relaxants or ibuprofen may help relieve your pain while the muscles heal. If at-home remedies don’t suffice, it’s possible that your spasms are a result from a much more serious injury and may require pain relieving injections or even surgery. A complete exam and further imaging tests help your doctor arrive at the treatments to relieve those painful back spasms.