Lower Back Pain

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Lower Back Pain

Research suggests that up to 80% of people will at some point experience back pain. Because of this it is one of the most common reasons for days off work. For some the back pain is due to a specific incident, such as lifting something heavy, which immediately caused an injury and will leave them in pain. However, for a large majority of people it can be an accumulation of everyday stressors which can cause the condition. Things such as

  • Poor posture – often when we aren’t thinking about our posture, we tend to adopt a slouched posture[
  • Prolonged sitting – very common for many people at work
  • Incorrect bending and lifting – how many times have you been told to bend at the knees not the back?
  • Sleeping posture – if you are in a twisted position all night, this can cause some stress on your joints
  • Prolonged bending such as when gardening can stress the joints and muscles in your lower back
  • Limping due to an injury or pain in your leg – will put an uneven stress on your lower back

Your pelvis is the broadest structure in your back. It is the foundation for the rest of your body. If your spine has compensated and moved your centre of gravity away from your pelvis, it may put more stress on the much smaller vertebrae in your spine. This may then lead to greater wear in these areas coping with greater stress than they are designed to bear.

While pain relief and anti-inflammatories may seem to decrease your pain levels, they are simply masking an underlying problem which should be fixed.

More than 50 reviews over the past 40 years have been published evaluating the effectiveness of chiropractic treatment on lower back pain. The conclusions of these reviews have been relatively consistent, with evidence supporting the short term use of chiropractic care for back pain. Chiropractic is effective as it releases tension in the muscles and joints and allows your spine to move freely as it is designed to.

A study by Meade TW et al showed the Chiropractic treatment was more effective than hospital outpatient management mainly for patients with chronic or severe back pain. It proved to have a better long term benefit than what the outpatient management had to offer. Another study by Paul G Shekelle showed that Chiropractic was the therapy of choice for patients with non-complicated acute low back pain.

What can you do to prevent your lower back pain from returning?

  • Strengthen your core so that you have more support for your lower back when you try to do heavier tasks
  • Have your spine checked by a chiropractor
  • Have your work station ergonomically assessed
  • Start moving: exercise such as walking and swimming are a great start
  • Limit the time you wear high heels
  • Maintain proper posture