Symptoms of a Serious Back Pain Condition

Knowing the difference between a sore back and something more serious isn’t easy. A proactive approach for the treatment of back problems begins with research and a regimented, personal checklist. Below are several indicators of a “bad back” that should be monitored for the sake of preventive spinal health, and good communication with your doctor:

Family History

This is a good place to begin understanding the inherent risks you may face in regard to spinal health. Most importantly, family health information will help inform your treating physician and assist in a more accurate diagnosis.

Conditions such as lumbar disc degeneration (LDD) or ankylosing spondylitis are hereditary, cause back pain, and can be highly degenerative as you age. Thus, knowing what questions to ask about your own condition can begin with researching your family tree for back problems.

Loss of Feeling/Mobility

Should you notice a lack of mobility or sensitivity in your back after heavily engaging the muscles (or experiencing a strainful event,) you should seek the support of a medical specialist.

On their own, heavy exercise should not cause recurrent spinal discomfort or immobility, and any workout that does should be abandoned.

The same goes for periods of inactivity: if your back repetitively feels tension or weakness, take note of it.


This part is fairly obvious, but worth reiterating: chronic pain (even a little bit,) is an indication that your back needs help. Be hyper aware of when and where you feel pain in your back, and document these experiences for your doctor. The pain of a serious back condition can often cause cycles of nausea, sleeplessness, and stress.

Early diagnosis of a back condition can make the debilitating cycle of physical and psychological limitation more manageable for patients. Knowing the difference between a sore back and something more serious isn’t easy, and it begins with knowing your own body.

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