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Lower Back Pain Treatment

Lower back pain is a common condition that will affect most people at some point in their lives. It is one of the most common problems that Osteopaths treat. There are many different reasons that cause lower back pain and there are many different types of lower back pain. Lower back pain can range from a dull ache to sharp shooting pain. It can refer into the bottom, pelvis, groin and down the leg and into the foot.
Some of the common causes of lower back pain include:
  • Sleeping in an awkward position
  • Poor posture
  • Poor ergonomics at work
  • Lifting heavy objects
  • Poor lifting technique
  • Weak core muscles
  • Injury/trauma
The above causes will generally lead to functional pain that is related to stress and strain being put on the lower back and causing general musculoskeletal pain. This would be considered general lower back pain. Most of the causes above are factors in people’s everyday lives, which over a period of time will lead to dysfunction and pain.
Some injuries and trauma including falls can cause more serious problems that may require an assessment by a doctor.
Symptoms of lower back pain and lower back related issues can vary. The most common symptom is pain in the lower back, this pain could be an ache or a sharp shooting pain, it could be constant or intermittent. Symptoms of pain can refer into the bottom and groin as well as down the leg and into the foot. Numbness, tingling and pins and needles are all symptoms that can be caused by issues of the nerves in the lower back.
Osteopaths can assess your lower back and the surrounding areas to diagnose the cause of your lower back pain. This involves not only looking at the lower back but also looking at the pelvis, hips and back. An assessment will involve taking a case history to understand the nature of the problem. Your posture will be checked and you will be put through a range of motion test which involves moving your lower back to see how it moves to one side compared to the other. An assessment will also involve palpating the area, which involves feeling the muscles and joints to work out which are tight and restricted.
General musculoskeletal lower back pain is pain that relates to the muscles, joints and some nerve related issues. The most common types of musculoskeletal lower back pain are:
  • Lumbar joint strain
  • Intervertebral disc disruption
  • Sciatica
  • Muscles strains
  • Muscle spasms
  • Intervertebral disc bulges
  • Osteoarthritis
All of the above problems can be treated by Osteopaths. Osteopathic treatment is a form of manual medicine, which involves hands on techniques to help relieve pain and symptoms. This is achieved by loosening the tight muscles, strengthening the weak muscles, and helping to get restricted joints moving better. This will restore function to the lower back.
Lower back pain treatment generally involves the following:
  • Massage
  • Stretching
  • Mobilisation
  • Manipulation
  • Exercises
A common question when it comes to lower back pain treatment is whether the treatment is painful. Generally, most of the techniques won’t cause pain, but treatment of a painful area will be sensitive for most people. You should always let your Osteopath know if the treatment is painful, but sometimes you may need to go through a small amount of pain to get better.
Other forms of treatment that can help with lower back pain include:
  • Pain medication
  • Anti-inflammatories
  • Heat pack
  • Ice pack
  • Massage
  • Acupuncture
If you suffer from lower back pain or any other symptoms that may relate to issues in the lower back, you should get yourself assessed by an Osteopath.
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