A sprained back is the diagnosis when you stretch or tear a ligament in your back. When you suffer a lower back sprain, seek treatment for lower back sprain right away. Back muscle sprain treatment starts simple, with ice and aspirin, but gets more intense if the pain persists. Your back sprain treatment depends on your symptoms and pain level. Come to our NYC sports injury clinic to get your back pain treatment. Meet our back pain doctor Febin Melepura M.D. to get the pain relief you need in the safe, reassuring hands of the best New York sports pain management specialists.
Most people experience back pain at some point during their lives. Your spine is supported by a complex network of ligaments, muscles and bones that work together so your body moves as it’s supposed to. When you move a muscle or ligament the wrong way, it can cause pain and stiffness. When a ligament is involved, you have a back sprain.
Back sprains most often occur in your lumbar or lower back region, although you can sprain your middle back, too. The acute pain of an initial back sprain injury usually abates to a less painful but persistent ache that can last for several days or even weeks. The pain from a lower back sprain can interfere with work, sleep and your busy New York City lifestyle.
Back Sprain Causes
A sudden impact, such as a fall or an automobile accident, can result in a sprained back. People who play high-impact sports are at risk. A hard hit can cause muscles and ligaments to stretch and tear. Heavy lifting — especially when done incorrectly — can sprain your back.
Sometimes, the cause of a sprained back can seem so insignificant that you don’t even realize it at the time. You can sprain your back through poor posture and low muscle tone. More often, though, a lower back sprain is caused by repetitive, powerful motions, such as:
- Swinging a golf club or a baseball bat
- Engaging in intense exercise routines
- Not stretching before activities, leading to tight hamstrings
- Being overweight
Back Sprain Diagnosis
When you sprain your back, you feel a sharp, possibly intense surge of pain. Inflammation around the sprain causes your back to feel swollen, warm or tender to the touch. The pain may flare up when you move a certain way, even after it’s dulled. There’s a difference between a sprain and a strain:
- A strained back is caused by a pulled muscle or stretched tendon. Tendons connect muscles to bones. If you stretch either too far, it begins to tear.
- A sprained back involves a stretched or torn ligament. Ligaments are tough, ropy fibers that connect one bone to another. Ligaments can become damaged when they’re stretched too far.
Diagnosing a back sprain is as simple as visiting the Midtown Manhattan office of the Sports and Pain Institute of NY. Meet the doctor and get a physical examination. Imaging tests, such as an x-ray or MRI, help your physician rule out another cause of your pain such as a fracture. But your doctor typically diagnoses a back sprain based on your symptoms and medical history. The tests confirm that there are no underlying risk factors pointing to another diagnosis.
Because the symptoms of pulled muscles (back strains) and torn or stretched ligaments (back sprains) are virtually identical, both are referred to interchangeably. So, if you hear about a back muscle sprain treatment, it actually refers to treatment for a muscle strain. Whatever you call it, your NYC pain management physician only wants to ease your pain and get you back to your active lifestyle.
Back Sprain Treatment
Treatment for lower back sprains can sometimes be done right at home. In the early stages, use ice packs to reduce swelling and inflammation. After about two days, switch from cold to heat. A heat pack helps relax your strained muscles and soothe your sprained ligaments. Seek medical help if the pain continues after that, both for treatment and a proper diagnosis.
Over-the-counter pain medication is often sufficient to control the pain of a lower back sprain. NSAIDs — such as aspirin, ibuprofen, or naproxen — can help reduce inflammation, acting as a lower back muscle sprain treatment. Less swelling leads to less pain. If the pain is severe, your Manhattan doctor may prescribe a stronger medication. Acetaminophen blocks the pain signals to your brain, and muscle relaxers contribute to effective treatment for lower back sprains as well.
Preventing Back Sprains
Although back pain is a common ailment among adults, you can take steps to reduce your risk:
- Warm up before exercising, especially before starting something new or rigorous.
- Wear the appropriate protective gear when engaging in high-impact sports.
- Lift heavy objects carefully, holding objects close to your body, bracing your feet shoulder-width apart and asking for help if the item is too heavy.
- Keep your muscles and ligaments strong and limber by eating healthy and exercising regularly.
- Pay attention to your body’s signals. If you start to feel twinges of back pain, take a break.
Do you have any questions about the back sprain treatment we offer in NYC? Would you like to schedule an appointment with the best rated New York’s back pain doctor Febin Melepura MD of sports pain management clinic NYC? Please contact our office for consultation with the top pain relief specialist in Midtown Manhattan.