Back pain can consist of a mild, dull ache to persistent, disabling and intense pain. Back pain can result in restricted mobility, and can interfere with the functioning of one’s life as well. Neck pain, on the other hand, can occur in the area of the cervical vertebrae of one’s neck. Due to its range of motion and location, one’s neck can often be left unprotected and prone to injury. Neck and back pain can acute, as it can come on suddenly and severely. Chronic pain can continue for weeks, months, or even years. The pain can be either continuous, or intermittent. It can occur due to trauma, strain, habits, aging, bulging, ruptured discs, systemic problems, or genetic and congenital conditions.
Once a complete history and physical examination has been completed, a treatment plan shall be developed. Diagnostic imaging such as an MRI or an X-ray is done, a blood test might be conducted for the assessment of general health, and a bone scan might be done to check for suspected compression fractures or tumors. The options for treatment vary for each condition. A combination of the following treatments are usually administered:
Pain medications: These can be used to ensure that pain ends up settling down within a few days. Strong narcotic-containing medicines are usually unnecessary, however, some doctors might provide these for the first few days.
Immobilization: This can be accomplished through the use of a cast, sling, or splint. It is crucial to ensure that you follow your doctor’s instructions regarding the use of these items, especially when it has been advised to discontinue the use and begin moving the area.
Instructions: It is optimal to rest the injured area, and keep it elevated. Continued use of the injury area might not necessarily make the injury worse, however, it can result in the prolonging of the symptoms. In most cases however, limited use is acceptable within normal ranges of motion as long as there is no applied weight or strain.
– Hospital stay: If you are severely injured, you might need to be admitted to the hospital for further testing or might even be referred to an orthopedist.
To prevent back and neck pain, one should ensure that they conduct proper exercise of the shoulders and neck to reduce the risk of injury. Furthermore, while performing hazardous tasks, one should have someone present in order to reduce the likelihood of an injury taking place. One should be aware of their limitations, and ensure that they do not perform acts for which they don’t have the training, skills, tools or strength. Lastly, one must make sure that they wear seat belts and other safety belts for the reduction of injuries.
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