What is low back pain?
Eighty percent (80%) of people will experience low back pain at some stage of their life.
It is one of the most common reasons for people missing work and seeing a doctor or physiotherapist.
But lower back pain is something you can avoid with some inside knowledge, back care strategies and some back exercises.
However, if you choose to neglect your back care, you can be rendered vulnerable to lower back pain, sciatica (leg pain) or other nerve pain from a pinched nerve.
Long-term lower back pain can result in permanent conditions such as spinal stenosis or degenerative disc disease.
Significant acute lower back pain can result from a herniated disc (slipped disc), back muscle pain, back ligament strain or a non-specific lower back pain.You can also suffer lower back pain associated with systemic conditions such as fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis or ankylosing spondylitis.
How do I treat low back pain?
As you can see while it is common, the diagnosis is specific to you and is best care for with the assistance of a spinal health care such as a physiotherapist.
Not only can they assist you with acute relief, they can also help you on your way to long-term self management and prevention. This usually includes a thorough back assessment to determine risk factors such and muscle weakness, inflexibility, stiff or unstable joints.
They can also advise you when a back brace is suitable or if you are better advised to perform some specific back exercises.
Does poor posture effect it?
Poor posture can cause a range problems including back pain, spinal problems, poor circulation, joint degeneration and rounded shoulders.
Good posture can help relieve your pain and involves training your body to function in positions where the least amount of strain is placed on supporting muscles and ligaments.
When improving your posture, your physiotherapist will work with you to determine the cause and decide on a course of treatment.
Poor posture can cause problems including:
- back pain.
- spinal problems.
- muscle fatigue and strain.
- joint degeneration and increased disc problems.
- ligament laxity/stretch.
- rounded shoulders.
- poor circulation.
Treatment for Low Back Pain
Gentle massage, stretching and strengthening exercises will all help to relieve back pain. Your physiotherapist will guide you through a program to ease your pain and ensure recurrence is unlikely.
Postural re-education is important. If you move well and efficiently you will put far less stress on your spine. Sometimes years of habits need to be overcome in order to feel moving naturally is normal.
Normal movement needs to be underpinned by good range of movement of muscles and joints throughout the body. It’s not just the spine that is normally at fault. Hip, leg and even shoulder issues can contribute to how we move.
Stability in the core and peripheral joints also needs to be addressed. Without addressing the real problem you are merely removing the pain but not addressing the cause.
A multifactorial approach to low back pain is vital to treat and manage it effectively. That way you’ll be back moving freely and efficiently and pain free.
Glenferrie Sports and Spinal Clinic is located in Hawthorn. Situated conveniently near public transport and with convenient parking it is central to Camberwell, Kew, Richmond, Toorak and Malvern.
For appointments call 03 9815 2555, or book online here