Lower back pain accompanied by clicking of vertebrae

by k.C
(Hamilton, Ontario, Canada )

Hello there,

I am currently having issues with lower back pain and would greatly appreciate any guidance you may have to offer.

Physical traits
-30 years old
-6'4" tall
-275 lbs
-on my feet for much of my day
-physically active but weak core

Affliction description
-Lower few vertebrae
-No pain in legs
-Constant ache, no sharp pains
-Alleviated temporarily by cracking lower back
-Lower back joints crack and click repeatedly after long periods of rest. I.e. Sleep.
-Pain increases after long periods of vertically
-Tylenol helps, Aleve does not

Now I understand that pain in certain areas in normal as one gets older. However, at this point I cannot think that this level of pain and the consistency at which it is felt is due to a certain ailment for which there may be a remedy.

Could you please let me know what you think could be causing this pain, and if there is anything I should be doing to alleviate. Also, perhaps seeing a professional in person would be an idea, but in which profession should I seek my answers and is there a common affliction that causes such symtoms that I could be better informed upon my visit.

Many thanks in advance, I look forward to hearing back from you.


Hello KC,
What really disturbs me is that "getting older".
If you're getting older at 30, then what am I at 68? A fossil?!

Cracking your own spine is a pernicious habit; it will utterly ruin the cartilage lining the joints in your back.

Firstly, when a chiropractor adjusts your back, he applies distraction to that the manipulation doesn't grind the cartilage of one facet onto that of the other; you can't do that.

And secondly, whilst there are varying opinions, mine is that a particular joint should not be manipulated more than about 25 times in a year, and that may be too much. You are probably doing that many in a week.

Yes, your back is getting older, and will be fossilized in arthritis before long if you don't stop. I'm being serious.

I don't need to tell you that you are overweight. I've just calculated your BMI and at 33.5 you are dangerously obese. Strokes, heart attack, arthritis in the knees and a host of other afflictions await. The extra weight pressing down from one facet on that below is contributing to your pain.

By now you are probably thoroughly irritated with me; sorry, can't be helped.

I have two strong recommendations. Neither are particularly onerous and will change your life.

1. Start doing the simple lower back exercises you'll find at Chiropractic help every single morning, without fail, before getting out of bed. They take less than two minutes. I too have had serious lower back injuries, but if I do my own exercises every morning I have little or no pain. You can expect the same.

2. Forget dieting. Instead learn about the meaning of glycemic index. Those foods with a high GI give a rapid surge in blood sugar, spike in insulin which then stores that glucose as fat. An internet search will tell you all you need to know; it's not rocket science.

In short, could you live with absolutely no white rice, potatoes, refined bread and sugary colas? You urgently need to get your weight below 250 to get out of the danger zone.

And lastly start hunting for a local chiropractor who is thorough, big and strong. It's going to take a strong man to adjust your spine.

Good luck; do it as the alternative is too ghastly to contemplate.

Dr Barrie Lewis

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