Anything you consume has the potential to affect all parts of your body. This may be especially true when it comes to back pain that seems to correlate with either heavy drinking or regular alcohol consumption. While there is no definitive study on the subject, there is evidence suggesting a possible connection between drinking and back pain.
Slowing the Natural Healing Process
Alcohol is a muscle relaxant and depressant, meaning that it tends to slow some of the natural processes that take place within the body. For individuals with existing back problems, alcohol consumption may aggravate discomfort by slowing the process of tissue healing that often takes place with a good night’s sleep, possibly explaining the aches and pains some people experience after a night of alcohol consumption.
Excessive Drinking and Chronic Back Pain
In a review of multiple prior studies, researchers conducting a review of available data determined that there appears to be a link between excessive drinking and chronic low back pain. Some of the studies only noted a slight connection, while studies focusing on subjects with an alcohol dependence problem suggested a more definitive correlation.
Precautions to Take While Drinking
Many factors can contribute to back pain. For instance, some individuals may perform certain movements while drinking they wouldn’t ordinarily make that could twist or contort the spine or place added pressure on back muscles. For this reason, researchers who have explored this aspect of back pain stress the importance of educating the public on the importance of taking precautions while drinking, such as:
- Being mindful of possible medication interactions that could affect back pain
- Taking other steps, such as getting regular exercise and maintaining a healthy diet, that could offset some effects of drinking
- Drinking alcohol responsibility
There are many factors that can determine how alcohol affects someone. However, any lingering or sudden back pain should be taken seriously, which includes seeing a board-certified spine specialist for further evaluation and ultimately taking steps to lead a healthy lifestyle. In other words, moderation may be the key to minimizing or preventing back pain that’s possibly linked to alcohol consumption.
If you struggle with chronic back pain, it might be time to speak with an experienced spine surgeon in Los Angeles who can diagnose the cause and determine effective treatment options. To learn more, schedule an in-person consultation at The Spine Institute Center for Spinal Restoration. Call (310) 828-7757 today.