Because men possess greater upper body strength, more total muscle mass, and a different body structure than women, they gravitate toward a more physically demanding lifestyle. It’s not uncommon for men to select backbreaking careers that require heavy lifting and bending. In their spare time men are often involved with sports activities, and pastimes that lend themselves to muscle strain and injury. Find out 10 reasons why men experience backaches.
Sports injuries – While weekend warriors are more prone to back injuries than people who exercise frequently and who routinely participate in sports events, male athletes of all ages can experience low back pain. Those who don’t warm up increase the likelihood of back injuries. Sports most likely to cause back pain are golf, tennis, running, racquetball, and biking.
Yard work, car repairs, and home improvement projects – Activities which can contribute to back pain include: pulling weeds, lifting heavy objects, pushing a lawnmower, working beneath a vehicle, holding heavy equipment, working while on a ladder, house painting, working in cramped spaces, and raking or shoveling snow. Many people forget to stretch prior to participating in these activities.
Poor posture and a weak core – When the muscles that run the length of a person’s trunk and torso become weak, they are more prone to back injuries. Performing daily activities with poor posture will increase your chance of muscle strains. Examples of incorrect posture include: having your head tilted too far forward, your shoulders slouched or unlevel, your knees locked, your pelvis tilted incorrectly, or your low back over-arched.
Stress – Continual muscle tension caused by chronic stress is known to cause backaches.
Bulging disc – When those spongy shock absorbers between each bone in the spine become damaged, you are at higher risk for back muscle spasms. Herniated or “slipped discs” in the spine are usually caused by an injury and are diagnosed by an MRI or CT scan.
Acute trauma – This can occur from car accidents, falls, or injuries while on the job. When the bones, joints, muscles, ligaments, and nerves of the spine, tailbone, hips, or pelvis become seriously injured, it is important to get immediate treatment so that the damage heals properly and doesn’t return later.
Infection and Inflammation – Infection can also be a cause of back pain. Infection can occur in the kidneys, bladder, and gallbladder. Other sources of inflammation can be from kidney stones, gall stones, or from a shingles infection from the same virus that causes chicken pox.
Mattress – Sleeping routinely on a poor mattress can cause back pain.
Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm – When the wall of the aorta (the largest artery in the body) becomes stretched and weakened, people can experience feelings of pulsations in their abdomen along with back pain and nausea. This can become a medical emergency.
Prostate Cancer – Prostate cancer is a serious disease that can cause back pain, blood in the urine, and changes in urine flow. Men with a family history of cancer, or who are ages 50 and older are recommended to have their blood tested to monitor prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels.
Back pain that doesn’t improve after several days needs checked by a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment.
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