One of the most common age-related back problems is called spinal stenosis. The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons estimates that 8 to 11 percent of Americans will be affected by this condition, most over the age of 50. While there is no cure for spinal stenosis, there are some things that you can do to alleviate the pain and discomfort associated with the disorder. What is Spinal Stenosis? Spinal stenosis is characterized by the narrowing or compression of the spinal cord, either in the neck (cervical spine) or the lower back (lumbar spine). When this happens, the nerve roots are irritated, causing pain. Most people suffer from spinal stenosis in.