The spine is our body's central support system. It connects different parts of your musculoskeletal system. Your spine helps you sit, stand, walk, twist and bend. Back pain and other spinal pains are now common in both old and young people. Back pain is a serious issue as it can make any person bed-ridden for days and even for years. Around 20% who suffer from back and neck pain are in the age group of 16-34. On average 45% of people in India neglect their spinal treatment for more than 7 weeks.
World Spine Day is celebrated on October 16 to inform people about the struggles faced by spinal pain and its disability. The day seeks to promote the overall health and wellbeing of one's spine. The day is organized by the World Federation of Chiropractic. A good posture and staying active are important to ensure good spinal health. We at Medicircle are conducting the World Spine day Awareness Series wherein we will be featuring experts in this field to understand and create awareness about good spine health.
Dr. Devesh Dholakia is an M.S. (Ortho), Spine Surgeon who has undergone training in spine surgery at KEM Hospital Mumbai, NUH Hospital Singapore, Germany & U.S.A. Currently, he is associated with Saifee, Jaslok, Global, Wockhardt, Elizabeth Hospitals. Dr. Devesh Dholakia is one of the top spine surgeons in the city of Mumbai. He is trusted by patients not only in India but also from Africa and the Middle East. They offer technologies with less pain, small scars, minimal blood loss, fewer complications as well as faster recovery, return to home & work, and resumption of a normal lifestyle.
Corona is the main cause of spinal problems
Dr. Devesh says, "The main cause of spinal problems is the corona. The pandemic has led to a culture of study from home, work from home, minimal exercises, sedentary lifestyle, no physical activity resulting in weight gain leading to strain on the back and thus pain in the spine. In the elderly, due to an inactive lifestyle, poor diet, and lots of rest, their bones and muscles become weak resulting in back pain. At present, the corona is the biggest cause of back pain. Now even younger generations are also seen suffering from back pain.”
Dr. Devesh expresses, “Everyone suffers from back pain at least once in their entire life. Infection or tumor is the most common reason for back pain in children. In adolescents and younger age groups, back pain is caused by slip discs or after a violent injury or fractures. In the elderly, spondylosis and infections give back pain. The most common cause of back pain in any age group is muscle spasms. For this, take rest, hot water fermentation, and pain killers and within a few days, it will be cured. If it doesn’t, it is better to see a doctor sooner.”
All about spinal pain
Dr. Devesh describes, “We can divide spinal pain into three categories – Simple back pain which is very common, most of the patients recover without treatment after a few days. The second is root pain, tingling pain in the fingers, hands, or feet. It occurs because of twitching of the nerves somewhere in the spine, an example is slip disc. The third category is dangerous for which you should see the doctor at the earliest, this pain is persistent and lasts for more days. If it is accompanied by loss of weight, loss of appetite, weakness in your arms or legs, then you should immediately visit a doctor. It is not life-threatening but it is good to consult for optimum results.”
Tips to prevent back pain
Dr. Devesh illustrates several ways to avoid such back pains
- Sleep and eat well.
- Exercise regularly at least 4 times a week.
- Don’t have a static posture for a long time, take frequent breaks after every half an hour.
- Women should try to avoid wearing heels for long.
- While working on a laptop, see that your laptop is at the right level for work. Don't down your neck to see your phone, rather see straight while using it. If you are sitting for too long, make sure the chair is of the best quality that supports your lower back too.
- For long-term maintenance, do yoga and physio.
Tips for a healthy spine
Dr. Devesh gave some important tips
The first and foremost reason is obesity, the more your stomach bulges, the more it puts strain on your back. Wrong use of computers and mobiles in an awkward position. This causes tremendous strain on your neck. So, take better care of your neck and spine as it is connecting other body parts. A healthy spine means a healthy body. Try to avoid smoking because smoking reduces the blood supply to your disc and damages your discs.
Dr. Devesh stresses, "Spine surgery is dangerous, it is a total myth. Most spine problems can be treated only with medications and physiotherapy, very few treatments require surgery. Even if you require surgery, you should not be scared and go ahead with it. With today’s technology, spine surgery is very safe. If it is done for the right indication under the right condition, it gives excellent results. With advancements in laser surgery, microscope, equipment, and anesthesia are available. Just have faith in the doctor.”
(Edited by Renu Gupta)