Good Posture & Chronic Pain

Common Back Pain Myths



Back pain experience is a multifaceted experience which often refers to pain in the neck (cervical), middle back (thoracic), lower back (lumbar), or coccydynia (tailbone). Back pain may be observed as a dull ache, shooting/piercing pain, or a burning sensation depending on its severity or acute, sub-acute, or chronic pain by its duration. There is a critical need to addresses common misconceptions and myths about back pain. Proper quality education and awareness about back pain issues is a first step for achieving successful management of back pain and a variety of back problems. General myths, myths about diagnoses, causes, and treatment options for back problems will be discussed in below-mentioned points.

Myth: I will not have back pain and other related problems

Fact:Unfortunately, the fact is that 8 out of 10 people do experience back pain and back problems at some point in their lives. It is the most common reason of disability in men over 45 years requiring a visit to a primary care doctor, surgical procedures, and hospitalization.

Myth: Paralysis is a result of severe back pain

Fact: In most of the cases, back pain does not indicate prospective paralysis. However, back pain arising due to spine tumors, spinal infections, and unstable spine fracture can lead to paralysis.

Myth: Back pain initiated at a young age worsens with age progression

Fact:People in the age group of 35-55 years have the high incidence of back pain. However, it is not yet verified by any research that back pain during young age worsens with aging.

Myth: I should not get back pain because I do workout

Fact:As a matter of fact, it is true people who are physically active have fewer chances to suffer from back pain than people who do not but also everyone is susceptible to back pain regardless of the level of their physical activity.

Myth: My parents had bad back pain, so I will also have it.

Fact: For most instances, back pain is not carried forward to generations as there is no hereditary susceptibility. Back conditions are not passed from parents to children.

Myth: Back problems are diagnosed only by MRI scan or other diagnostic tests

Fact:Detailed medical history and thorough physical examination may be enough for successful treatment approaches. In other cases MRI scan or other sophisticated diagnostic tests are needed.

Myth: There is a standard therapeutic regimen for most causes of back pain

Fact:There is no standard cure for most causes of back pain. Different types of back pain are treated as per the causative factor. Treatment for back pain may range from simple posture modification, a painkiller, exercise, or even surgery.

Myth: Rest is the ultimate key to recovery from back pain

Fact:A short period of bed rest may be recommended for acute back pain so as to reduce pressure on the spine discs and to cease the mechanical stress. However, in most instances, prolonged rest can be unfavorable and can lead to increased pain and other adverse effects, such as muscle atrophy, cardiopulmonary deconditioning, bone mineral loss, the risk of blood clots, and creating an illness mindset.

Myth: Heat and massage facilitate recovery from back pain

Fact: These rehabilitations can diminish acute back pain for short-term, but do not provide long-term relief from back problems.

Myth: Long-term pain directs to the need of surgery for back problems


Spine surgery has not emerged as a very successful therapeutic management option while treating chronic back pain. Typically, back pain symptoms that occur early in the course of pain will be helped by back surgery.

Myth: Severe back pain correlates to the level of back damage

Fact:Level of pain correlates with the degree of injury in case of acute pain. However, with chronic back pain, the pain severity does not typically correlate with the amount of back damage.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *