If your back pain lasts longer than two weeks and prevents you from participating in your normal daily activities, see your family doctor. If the pain is severe, you should see a doctor as soon as possible. Most back pain gets better in a few weeks without treatment. Over-the-counter pain relievers usually help reduce back pain.
You may also want to apply cold or heat to the painful area. However, back pain can be debilitating and some patients need the help of a doctor to cope with the pain or treat the problem with surgical or non-surgical techniques. See a doctor if you have back pain accompanied by symptoms such as numbness or discomfort after an accident. This ancient Japanese healing practice can be a therapy without side effects to improve back pain.
In fact, according to the American Chiropractic Association, approximately 80 percent of people will experience back pain at some point in their lives. A doctor can provide treatment to relieve symptoms and prevent back pain from becoming serious. Problems with bowel or bladder control Severe low back pain with incontinence may be a sign of a rare but dangerous condition called horsetail syndrome. Although spinal tumors are rare, you still want to be examined by a doctor if you have unexplained weight loss with back pain.
When you have unexpected and unexplained weight loss, your doctor may want to rule out infections and tumors as possible causes of back pain. If you've experienced serious trauma, such as a fall from a height or a car accident, or if you've had relatively minor trauma and are over 50 years old, your doctor will want to look closely at your back pain. The back is made up of a vertebral column, muscles, tendons and nerves, so it can be difficult to determine for yourself what is causing the pain. Patients may remember a specific incident that caused their back pain or have no idea what is causing the discomfort.
Back pain, combined with loss of bowel or bladder control, may be a telltale sign of a rare but serious condition called horsetail syndrome, in which the nerve roots at the lower end of the spinal cord are squeezed and paralyzed.