The typical cause of spinal stenosis is aging. Most people who experience it start having symptoms after age 50. However, there are also cases where people who have scoliosis or other congenital factors develop spinal stenosis earlier. Spondylolisthesis, a slippage and misalignment of the vertebrae, can also cause spinal stenosis.
In most cases, spinal stenosis emerges as a result of degenerative arthritis. The arthritis occurs over many years as a result of daily wear and tear on the spine. Over time, this can lead to a breakdown of the connective tissue that provides cushioning between the bones of the spinal column. This, in turn, increases the risk of bone spurs that can compress the spinal column and the nerves in the spine.
The risk factors for spinal stenosis include obesity, a medical history that includes back pain or back injuries, poor posture, hypertension, and frequent overextension of the back.