Upper and middle back in spine is known as thoracic spine which has 12 vertebras with discs acting as shock absorbers with muscles plus ligaments for moving the spine. It is stable and complex in structure but any type of problem in this area can cause pain with stiffness. Pain in thoracic spine is normally dull or a burning sensation normally felt from base of neck area to rib case. Although this pain is not as common as Low back and neck pain but it can be from mild to severe.
Causes of upper back pain—
• Any type of accident and injury to muscles and ligaments of this area.
• Any type of injury to the disc can be a reason.
• Any type of pressure on the nerves like herniated disc, tendonitis and degeneration with age.
• In correct posture of sitting, standing and sleeping can generate this pain.
• Reoccurring strains
• Fracture in thoracic vertebra’s.
• Condition like Myofascial pain or trigger pain,Osteoarthrirtis.
Out of all these causes, our poor posture is responsible for this pain and for a permanent solution Physiotherapy help must be taken initially when pain is less. Physiotherapists are expert to diagnose the real cause of pain and coordinating with patient to enhance healing and reduce pain.Patient is also taught ways to manage pain and most important is posture correction.Correcting posture is not an easy task but gradually it can be inculcated.
Main aim of physiotherapist is to help patient manage pain and restoration of normal functions. This is done with the help of lessening pain plus inflammation and enhancing flexibility as well as strength of muscles. Variety of techniques are used that are therapies and exercises to cure pain and avoiding its re occurrence.
There are following ways to manage upper back pain and avoid it in future by following methods—
1. Improving the strength and flexibility of crucial muscles in lower back,shoulders,stomach helps as these muscles support our thoracic spine. Person can do yoga,swimming,walking or cycling to keep the body moving. One can do Light stretching exercises after warming up session as per the pain prevalent in upper back.Strong muscles in these area give accurate support to spine improving our body postures.
2. Doing light exercises and maintaining body movements improve the flow of blood strengthening our muscles.Doing exercises as prescribed by physiotherapist lessens the emotional stress and anxiety.
3. One can do back stretches for a healthy muscles,joints,postures, and also to keep discs moving relevant exercises done in right way reduce fat depositions in body which reduces stress on muscles and joints.
4. Patient should consult doctor to take any kind of painkillers but one should always avoid the self-medication as it is dangerous for body.
5. Ice and heat therapy used in physiotherapy lessens the pain, inflammation and stiffness. Heat therapy reduces the pain effectively and ice therapy manages swelling.
6. Expert can recommend soft message or spine manipulation therapy to tackle the stress in upper back and improving the flow of blood.
7. Acupuncture is an art of inserting needles into specific points to enhance healing.Person can try this therapy in upper back can be beneficial.
8. Correcting the posture of spine when we sit, stand, bend,lift things or while sleeping with the help of a physiotherapist. One must avoid slouching or bending too much forward while doing any type of work. One must learn to keep spine straight and adopt good posture for general body health gradually as one cannot change his/her posture overnight.
9. Every person while sleeping take comfortable pillows and mattresses for a good sound sleep. It’s better to use affirm pillow and mattress that can support the upper back.
10. Person can do deep breathing and relaxation exercises or even can do yoga as well as meditation to stay positive and cheerful. Healthy mind of a person reduces the stress on spine lessening the pain.
One last thing is always consult an expert orthopedic doctor if pain is too severe to get the accurate treatment. An expert will always recommend patient right line of action after correct diagnose as the aggressive treatment surgery is done only when all other methods fail to reduce pain.