Many cases of chronic back pain are hard to “pin” down just to one cause, unless from trauma of some sort. Usually for the less severe cases it can be the result of poor postural habits(slouching) and/or over strenuous labor causing minor trauma to the muscles.
Amongst work related conditions, construction workers, nurses and truck drivers have a higher incidence of back pain. Uneven or excessive weight across the back is the cause of back pain for many adolescents. Typically for the elderly back pain is caused by either the degenerative process and trauma.
Now as far as body mechanics are concerned remember always to lift with your legs and not your back. This is more tiring in the long run but I am sure you would prefer fatigue over injury. Back supports for your chair or car seat help you stabilize the natural curvatures of your spine, improving your posture. Quitting smoking can help tremendously in reducing overall back pain.
This is because nicotine restricts the flow of blood to the body’s tissues and causes more stagnation and potential for pain.
Exercise and stretching help to strengthen and improve flexibility of the muscles of the body. Maintaining a healthy weight prevents your center of gravity at your waist from shifting forward and adding additional strain to your back muscles. This is the reason why during pregnancy back pain is a very common complaint. Of course, remember that acupuncture for back pain can help you recover faster and get back on your feet again!
Modern Scientific Explanation
Conventional medicine treats back pain with pain killers, anti-inflammatories, chiropractic, physio-therapy, and surgeries. One difference that is seen is that conventional medications usually restrict the flow the blood to the muscles as the result of inhibiting prostaglandins. This is done to relax the muscle and control inflammation. This also decreases the sensitivity of the muscle. In Chinese medicine for back pain we usually cause an increase in the vascularity of the affected tissue with acupuncture and herbal topical linaments, plasters and formulas. This results in greater nourishment to the area thereby promoting tissue regeneration. Acupuncture also stimulates the body to produce more endorphins(natural pain killers) and natural steroids(reduces inflammation). This helps overcome the pain cycle during healing.