Dr. David Leonard is a Chiropractor practicing in Raymore, Missouri. Dr. Leonard specializes in preventing, diagnosing, and treating conditions associated with the neuromusculoskeletal system, while improving each patients functionality and quality of life. Conditions treated include sciatica, neck pain, and arthritis... more
Ask the Doctor
Q: Why is it that so many Americans have lower back pain today?
A: It is true, lower back pain does seem to be very prevalent today. In fact, the Agency for Health Care Policy and Reform (AHCPR) states that 80% of Americans will experience low back pain sometime in their life. However, the reality is low back pain has been around for thousands of years. Hippocrates recorded instructions for treating back pain with manual manipulation and there are many references to low back pain in ancient Chinese manuals. There are several reasons that low back pain is so prevalent today.
1) Most Americans live sedentary lives. Think about it. We sit for long periods driving in cars, watching TV, and sitting at the computer. Sitting puts a lot of stress on the spine and spinal discs. After sitting all week long we get up and engage in lots of activity on the weekends. The muscles and ligaments are not warmed up or stretched and injury occurs. Now, of course this is not true for everybody, but overall this is a general pattern.
2) People are living much longer today than they did 50 or 100 years ago. The average life span has increased 30 years in the last century. As we age, our body is not as resilient as when we were young (moving parts wear out). This translates to people being injured more easily even after minor falls or accidents.
3) Another reason is that we are constantly working and walking on hard surfaces. Unless you live in a very rural place, you are walking on sidewalks and asphalt all the time. Even our office buildings are hard concrete poured floors. These surfaces don’t give as much as the bare ground or a wooden floor. After years and years of working it can take its toll on your joints, causing the cartilage to wear out faster.
4) Other reasons include poor nutrition, poor posture, smoking etc. The good news is that chiropractic care can restore and even maintain injured backs. There is now over a hundred research studies documenting the effectiveness of chiropractic care worldwide. Don’t suffer needlessly, ask your local chiropractor for information about treating and preventing low back pain.
Dr. Leonard is the owner of Heritage Chiropractic & Wellness Center. The office can be reached at 322-1990 or visit our website at www.lowback.net