One unfortunate fact of life is that everyone will experience pain, whether it is acute or chronic or both. Acute pain is defined as pain that lasts less than three months and is usually caused by an event such as a twisted ankle or sprained knee. Common back pain remedies are usually formulated for acute back pain.
Chronic pain lasts longer than three months and is more often caused by some dysfunction within the body. Arthritis is a good example of chronic pain.
One of the most common types of pain is chronic back pain, which over 80 percent of Americans will experience in their lives. Back pain is one of the chief causes of lost productivity and disability payments in the U.S. The most common causes of chronic back pain include:
- "Slipped" or bulging discs- This is usually the result of a twisting the back in a stressful way, or lifting an excessive amount of weight.
- Compression fractures- Often due to the onset of osteoporosis, which is more common in women.
- Soft tissue damage- Caused by trauma to the back muscles, ligaments, or tendons.
- Spinal stenosis- This is a painful compression of the nerves to the back and the narrowing of the spinal canal.
- Fractures of the spine- Caused by a highly traumatic event such as an auto accident or fall from a ladder.
- Congenital back issues- Includes spinal curvature conditions such as scoliosis and lordosis.
People needing back pain treatment from acute lower back pain are more likely to live with the pain for a short period of time before seeking temporary relief through pain medications for lower back pain.
Though back pain dominates the list of common types of pain, there are also various sources of pain in the joints, particularly in the shoulders and knees.
Though most of the common remedies for joint and back pain are non-surgical, they usually treat only the symptoms and not the root cause of the pain. Physicians may recommend the use of over-the-counter knee pain relief tablets such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), however, these over-the-counter back pain medications may pose serious health risks if combined with anticoagulants.
In severe cases, doctors may prescribe powerful painkillers - opioids - which can lead to harmful addiction if not used correctly. Though opioids may appear to be the best pain reliever for back pain or joint pain they carry significant risks.
What is the best herbal remedy for back pain?