LOWER BACK PAIN – INTRODUCTION
Have you ever had back pain before?
If you have, you have an understanding of how severe and debilitating lower back pain can be.
If not I can assure you it is not one of life’s most pleasant experiences.
Every person has a unique and different experience when they have lower back pain. People have pain in different parts of their back- the pain can be closer to the spine, on each side of the spine, around the buttocks or tailbone area, or higher up around the kidney area.
People have lower back pain at different times- from those who have trouble sleeping to people who can’t sit for any length of time because of their back, to those who have trouble standing and walking.
Each person’s pain experience is also different.
WHAT IS CAUSING YOUR LOWER BACK PAIN
Most patients who come to Scarborough Physio and Health with lower back pain have developed their pain over time, and don’t really know what caused it. Often they can’t recount one particular injury or movement which caused the problem.
These people have generally developed their lower back pain due to PROLONGED POSTURE or REPETITIVE MOVEMENTS, which might be from the movements they do every day at work, at home, or in their sporting and leisure time pursuits. Having poor posture and performing the same movements repetitively can cause minor strain in the back, which over time can manifest in your body as severe pain in the lower back.
As well as the pain coming on spontaneously you can also injure your back by bending, lifting, twisting, reaching, or any movement where you place strain on your back and your back is in a vulnerable position.
CAN PHYSIO HELP GET RID OF MY LOWER BACK PAIN?
Lower back pain is the main condition we treat here at Scarborough Physio and Health. Our Physios have treated more than 5000 Redcliffe locals who have pain just like yours. We have virtually seen it all, so when you book an appointment with us you can rest assured we have seen and helped many people with lower back pain just like yours. It is important to be confident with your therapist, and if you are after a caring and experience team of health professionals then please book an appointment with one of our friendly and caring staff.
COMMON STRUCTURES INJURED IN THE LOWER BACK
Muscles- In the lower back there are many tissues which can be injured or can cause pain. There are several muscles in the lower back area that can be sore-the extensor muscles around the lower back, the gluteal muscles and deep hip rotator muscles can cause pain right around the tailbone or buttock area, and lots of other smaller stabilising muscles including the pelvic floor can also be problematic in people who suffer from lower back pain.
Facet Joints- in the lower back the vertebra attach to each other via the facet joints, which can often cause sharp pain in the back when you move. If the facet joints are swollen, stiff or inflamed, they can cause severe pain.
Intervertebral Discs- these structures can often cause quite severe pain and also difficulty sitting, bending and getting out of a chair. If you have injured a disc in your back you normally have pain right in the middle of your lower spine, and this pain can be persistent for many weeks or months. If you have a bulging disc in your back this can be painful if it is swollen or touching the small nerve roots which exit each level of the spine.
Sciatica- this is pain which is generally felt in any part of your leg, it can occur with or without accompanying back pain. Sciatica is very severe pain, the location of the pain can move and it can be hard to know where the pain is coming from and what is causing it. Sciatica is a condition which needs to be managed carefully and Physios are experts in treating sciatica. You may also require medication, rest, gentle exercise and advice about how to manage sciatica.
Broken vertebrae- you can have injuries to the bones in your spine either from trauma or as you age, which is called a crush fracture. If you see a physio and we suspect you may have a broken bone in your back there are still things we can do to help you, which include sending you for a back x ray to help diagnose your problem.
HOW WE TREAT YOUR LOWER BACK PAIN
At Scarborough Physio and Health we have a unique approach to treating your back pain. We take you through a detailed conversation where we find out lots of important information about your current injury, any relevant injuries you might have had in the past, your current situation and daily habits and routines, and how healthy you are from a medical perspective.
We then take you through a physical examination where we are looking for the main problem in your body which is causing your back pain. In some people this is quite easy to find and in other people the problem in your body is not in the exact area where you are suffering the pain. This physical examination is conducted with your utmost comfort and modesty in mind.
Our treatment with you is causes very little pain. Your physio will treat you with a combination of hands on therapy to relax the painful nerves and tight muscles, and to help you regain movement and get rid of the pain in the injured part of your body. Your physio will also give you simple and easy to understand exercises and advice as to how you can help yourself to get out of pain.
Most people get good relief from their treatment within one week and only a couple of sessions with their Physio.
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE ME TO GET OUT OF PAIN?
Most people who have a simple cause of their lower back pain can be completely free of their pain within 2-4 weeks, and in up to 6 Physio sessions.
Those with more complicated pain or injuries can take 2-3 months to recover, and may require 10-15 Physio sessions over that time, and this is still normal for more complicated injuries or severe pain.
Some people who have back injuries like broken bones, sciatica, those who have had back surgery and those people who suffer from chronic pain can require ongoing physiotherapy care to get on top of their pain most effectively.
HOW CAN I HELP MYSELF TO GET OUT OF PAIN?
The most important thing you can do to get rid of your pain is to understand what is causing your back pain. We find that when our patients understand what is causing their pain it gives them reassurance as to how long it will take them to recover, and they can put a plan in place to help get out of pain, which may include physio treatment, medication, exercises, changing the way they use their body at work, and understanding the factors which aggravate or ease their symptoms.
See a physio here at Scarborough Physio and Health to help you understand what is causing your lower back pain.
Get out of pain. Move freely again!