Lifting all those presents in and out of the car, bending over the kitchen table wrapping and tying ribbons…can be difficult on the back. A muscle spasm’s strike at inconvenient times. A muscle spasm is an acute onset of uncontrolled and involuntary muscle contraction. Most of us may be familiar with the sensation of muscle cramps such as the calves and hamstrings that may accompany fatigue in the affected muscles. These can be quite debilitating and painful and usually resolve with aggressive stretching and rehydration.
Back spasms are more often caused by a sudden ill directed movement that causes a muscle to spasm. For example, if someone is bent over and sneezes, they may cause a sudden spasm in a thoracic muscle that “locks” the back up. Or the person may attempt to lift a heavy weight (gym or occupation) and they may feel a muscle spasm. Golfers often complain of acute back spasms following big tee shots with driving woods, due to the sudden forceful muscle contraction involved in rotating the spine.
Often the spasm is a warning sign that something under the surface is waiting to become problematic. For example, if someone sprains a facet joint or tweaks a disc, often the muscles in the back area will spasm as a protective mechanism.
Take care with your posture and to do some nice long walks, some gentle stretches and some gym work if you feel any of the above symptom.
Remember ‘ the more you move the better you will get’.