Indore: COVID-19 taking a toll on the spine, the number of patients suffering from back pain doubled amid pandemic

Indore: The novel coronavirus has brought the whole world to a standstill and forced people to stay home due to the lockdown.

Apart from affecting millions of families around the world, it has also been taking a toll on people's spinal health. The COVID pandemic is mainly a respiratory disorder affecting lungs of the patients but the lifestyle changes due to the disease is affecting the whole body.

The major change in the life of professionals is the concept of ‘Work from Home’.

On World Spine Day, spine and pain management expert Dr Pravesh Kanthed said that the change in lifestyle and work from home is affecting people’s spine causing them back pain.

“With over six months having passed from COVID inception, the number of patients suffering from back pain or spinal issues have been doubled to what was the number before COVID. Much to the concern is that most of the new patients fall in the younger age group i.e. 15-45 years of age,” Dr Kanthed said.

This year, the theme of World Spine Day is ‘Back on Track’ aimed to celebrate people being able to reactivate and revitalize their bodies by getting out and focusing on effective spine care.

“Initially, people had to stay indoors due to lockdown for more than two months and now they are working from home but don’t have facilities to sit properly and to follow ergonomics. Many of them are even facing time constraints and working on their machines continuously for hours,” he added.

The experts believe that it is just a start of an increase in the number of patients with such issues and it will continue to increase for next few months as it is the result of sitting in wrong posture for the last few months.

However, Dr Kanthed also believed that at least 60 percent of the patients don’t require any medicine or surgery for getting relief as it can be cured with physical exercise and lifestyle changes.

“Regular exercise, giving rest to the spine, following ergonomics while sitting, and limiting your sitting time are some ways to keep your spine healthy,” he added.

Some facts about spinal disorder:

1. Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide, according to the Global Burden of Disease 2010.

2. Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work. Back pain is the second most common reason for visits to the doctor’s office, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections.

3. Experts estimate that as much as 80% of the population will experience a back problem at some time in their lives.

4. Most cases of back pain are mechanical or non-organic - meaning they are not caused by serious conditions, such as inflammatory arthritis, infection, fracture, or cancer.

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