Most often, back pain is the result of a structural problem that if not corrected will continue to cause pain and discomfort.
The human spine is composed of 24 movable bones called vertebrae. In between every two vertebrae is a fibrous cartilage structure called a disc that contains a jelly-like center called the nucleus pulposus. The job of the nucleus pulposus is to provide both flexibility and cushioning for the spine.
Housed within the vertebral or spinal column is the delicate spinal cord which is an extension from your brain. It is from this spinal cord that the vast system of nerves branch off from the spine to the organs, muscles and tissues of the neck, arms, back, hips and legs. The nervous system functions like a master computer to control the entire human organism.
Unfortunately it is easy for the vertebrae or bones of the spine to shift, and this often results in pressure (compression) being placed on these important nerve fibers. Many activities and accidents can cause this improper movement of the spine and lead to pain syndromes ranging from minor irritations to severe and often lasting pain in the lower back and or legs. It is not unusual for a person to experience a number of minor injuries that over a period of time result in small tears to the fibrous structure of the disc.
Repetitive injuries can often lead to the straw that broke the camel's back and suddenly result in a more serious tear or rupture of the disc itself. This bulging, herniated or ruptured disc often results in lower back and/or leg pain in one or both legs. One of the most common causes of these types of injuries is a lifting or twisting event due to incorrect methods.
Add to the list falls, on the job injuries, obesity and pregnancy.