As we age, we start to regard minor aches and pains as normal side effects of daily life. However, at some point, your discomfort may signal a problem that can be corrected by an orthopedic doctor. If you’re experiencing neck or back pain, you could have a condition that requires medical attention. To help you understand when to see a doctor, here are some signs that your pain could stem from an underlying issue.
3 Signs You Need to See a Doctor for Neck or Back Pain
1. You Have Other Symptoms
Neck and back pain have many possible causes, but when paired with other symptoms, they could indicate severe conditions. For example, if you’re having trouble getting to the bathroom in time, you might be dealing with cauda equina syndrome (CES), which requires emergency back surgery to prevent paralysis. If your pain is interfering with your life, seeing an orthopedic doctor will not only provide relief but also confirm that you aren’t facing other issues.
2. Stretching & Exercise Don’t Help
Many medical professionals encourage patients with neck and back pain to avoid a sedentary lifestyle by stretching, going on walks, and engaging in light exercise regularly. This helps strengthen the core muscles to support the weight of the spine. However, if these mild activities are exacerbating your discomfort, stop immediately to prevent injuries. This could signal a spinal problem, such as a slipped or bulging disc, and flexing or stretching the surrounding muscles may increase your pain.
3. You Were In an Accident
Sometimes, chronic pain is the result of muscle tension brought on by poor posture, overuse, or prolonged sitting. However, if your neck or back pain is a result of an accident, such as a slip-and-fall or car crash, your body may have suffered damage from the incident. In this case, you could have a sprain or a break, which requires professional attention and won’t heal itself.
If you notice any of these red flags, head to Advanced Orthopaedic Associates in Bergen, Passaic, Morris County, NJ. They have over 25 years of experience helping a wide range of patients find relief from foot and ankle strain, arthritis, shoulder pain, sports injuries, and more. With their two-phase approach, they’ll treat your neck or back pain while working to prevent future issues. Visit their website to learn more about their work or call (973) 839-5700 to schedule an appointment.