the old saying goes that the only two sure things in life
are death and taxes, back pain isn't far behind. The National
Institutes of Health estimates that between 60 percent and
85 percent of all American adults experience back pain at
some point in life, and that between 20 percent and 30 percent
of the adult population suffers from back pain at any given
time. Unfortunately, it can be quite difficult to predict
who will suffer back pain, when it will occur, and what factors
are likely to cause the problem.
A recent study examined the records of more than 11,000 Canadian
adults who reported no back problems in 1994-1995. At a follow-up
interview two years later, the participants were asked whether
they had been diagnosed by a health professional with any
Based on the follow-up interviews, women were slightly more
likely (9 percent) than men (8.1 percent) to have suffered
back pain in the past two years. In men, the significant factors
leading to back pain were age (particularly between ages 45
and 64), height, activity patterns (especially heavy work),
a lack of gardening or yard work, and chronic stress. Women
who suffered back pain were more likely to be restricted to
performing certain activities; have been diagnosed with arthritis
or rheumatism; suffer from personal stress; and have a history
of psychological trauma that occurred as a child or teenager.
If you fall into one of the risk categories mentioned above,
now may be a particularly good time to schedule an appointment
with a doctor of chiropractic. Your chiropractor can talk
to you about ways to treat and prevent back pain, and provide
suggestions that will keep you healthy, active and pain-free.
Kopec JA, Sayre EC, Esdaile JM. Predictors of back pain in
a general population cohort. Spine 2003:29(1), pp.
For more information on back pain, go to http://www.chiroweb.com/find/tellmeabout/backpain.html