Pop Quiz: Pain in the Back – Causes and Relief Methods of Back Pain


Anyone suffering from back pain knows that it can be one of the most persistent and debilitating pains. Chronic back pain can be life-altering, with many sufferers desperate for a solution to their daily pain. Occasional back pain is very common, and a cause and treatment should be found to lessen reoccurrence and advancement to a chronic issue. Test your knowledge on the causes and relief methods for back pain and help yourself, a friend, or loved one protect their back or find relief.

  1. True or False? Worldwide, back pain is the single leading cause of disability.
  2. Which of the following is an estimate of the percentage of the population that will experience back pain in their lives?

  3. A. 30 percent
    B. 50 percent
    C. 60 percent
    D. 80 percent
  4. Which of the following can be a source of back pain? (Choose all that apply)

  5. A. Sprained ligaments
    B. Strained muscles
    C. Ruptured discs
    D. Irritated joints
    E. All of the Above
  6. Which of the following can be a cause of a back injury that leads to back pain?

  7. A. An injury or accident
    B. Medical issues, like arthritis, obesity, or disease of the internal organs, such as kidney stones, kidney infections, blood clots, or bone loss
    C. Poor posture
    D. Psychological stress
    E. All of the Above
  8. True or False? Studies show most back pain sufferers will require more than one form of treatment to alleviate back pain.
  9. Which of the following is NOT an initial treatment for back pain?

  10. A. Over-the-counter medications like acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
    B. Improving your posture
    C. Back surgery
    D. Sleeping on your side on a supportive mattress
    E. Warm and cold compresses applied daily
  11. True or False? In most cases, you should not stay on bed rest when experiencing back pain for more than a day or two.
  12. Before surgery, which of the following are additional treatment options for back pain? (Choose all that apply)

  13. A. Prescription pain relievers, such as prescription-strength NSAIDs or opioid medications
    B. Exercise like swimming, walking, and yoga
    C. Physical therapy and massages
    D. Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) or Biofeedback
    E. Spinal Injections, such as a corticosteroid injection
    F. All of the Above
  14. True or False? Your doctor may prescribe antidepressant medication to treat your back pain.
  15. Biofeedback, a process by which a special machine helps your brain to control its response to pain through moderating breathing, heart rate, blood flow, and muscle tension, and has been shown in some studies to be better than medication at alleviating back pain, can reduce pain intensity by which of the following percentages?

  16. A. 10 percent
    B. 20 percent
    C. 30 percent
    D. 40 percent
    E. None of the Above

    Resources: Information provided by WebMD and the American Chiropractic Association


    1. True.  Back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide.
    2. D. 80 percent. Experts estimate that 80 percent of people will experience back pain in their lifetimes.
    3. E. All of the Above. Sprained ligaments, strained muscles, ruptured discs, and irritated joints can all cause back pain.
    4. E. All of the Above. Injuries and accidents, a host of medical issues, poor posture, and even stress can cause back pain.
    5. True. Back pain sufferers should try a mix of treatments to treat back pain, and to keep it from returning.
    6. C. Surgery. All the rest are initial treatment options for back pain
    7. True. Doctors no longer recommend extensive bed rest for back pain. Exercise has been shown to effectively relieve back pain quickly.
    8. F. All of the Above. They are all treatment options for back pain, with back surgery being the last resort.
    9. True. Antidepressant medications have been shown to help ease back pain; it’s thought that antidepressants affect pain signals in the body due to their influence over chemical messengers.
    10. C. 30 percent. Biofeedback has been shown to reduce back pain intensity by about 30 percent with no side effects.

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