Thirty-one million Americans have low back pain at any given time and one half of all working Americans admit to having back symptoms each year. Back pain and sciatica are one of the most common reasons people seek medical attention, costing the system an estimated $50 Billion a year.
Why is back pain such a monumental problem? The back is a complicated structure of bones, joints, discs, ligaments and muscles that must be well balanced and work in unison. Whenever the back is subject to either small, repetitive stresses or significant excess stress, these bones and joints can lose their normal motion and position. Chiropractors refer to this as vertebral subluxation or spinal misalignment. Some examples of these stresses are motor vehicle accidents, lifting injuries, sports injuries, poor posture, obesity and even gravity.
Spinal subluxations may cause localized back pain or sciatic pain radiating down the buttocks, thighs or legs. Occasionally, cushioning discs supporting the vertebrae can bulge or rupture, increasing the pressure on delicate spinal nerves, leading to more pain or numbness. Chiropractors successfully correct subluxations, a complex of functional and/or structural changes in joints, which can interfere with nerve transmission, disturb other organ systems and undermine general health. Since an estimated 80% of the population will experience a back problem at some time in their life, a thorough chiropractic examination should be part of every family’s general health regimen.