Backache is one of the most common medical problems, affecting 8 out of 10 people at some point during their lives. Backache can range from a dull, constant ache to a sudden, sharp pain. Acute backache comes on suddenly and usually lasts from a few days to a few weeks. Backache is called chronic if it lasts for more than three months.

Most backache goes away on its own, though it may take a while. Taking over-the-counter pain relievers and resting can help. However, staying in bed for more than 1 or 2 days can make it worse.

If your backache is severe or doesn't improve after three days, you should call your health care provider. You should also get medical attention if you have backache following an injury.

Treatment for backache depends on what kind of pain you have, and what is causing it. It may include hot or cold packs, exercise, medicines, injections, complementary treatments, and sometimes surgery.