Eighty percent of people suffer from low back pain at some point in their lives. Low back pain is the second most common reason for visits to the doctor’s office and emergency room, outnumbered only by upper-respiratory infections. The fact is, that chronic low back pain has an affect on more than half of the adult population each year and more than 10% of all people experience frequent bouts of low back pain.
What Causes Low Back Pain?
There is a reason the low back is so susceptible to injury and pain is because the low back, like the neck, is inherently a very unstable part of the spine. Contrary to the thoracic spine, which is supported and stabilized by the rib cage. This instability allows us to have a great deal of mobility to touch our toes, tie our shoes or pick something up from the ground, but at the cost of increased risk of injury.
As long as it is healthy and functioning correctly, the low back can withstand tremendous forces without injury. Professional powerlifters can pick up several hundred pounds off the floor without injuring their low back. However, if the low back is not functioning properly or efficiently or has weakened supporting muscles, something as simple as taking a bag of groceries out of the trunk of their car, picking something up off the floor, or even simply bending down to pet the cat can cause a low back injury.
Researchers have previously believed that back pain would heal on its own. More recent evidence shows, however, that this is not true. These studies have shown that when low back pain is not treated, it may go away temporarily, but will most likely return. It is important to take all low back pain seriously no matter how severe and seek professional chiropractic care. This is especially true with pain that is chronic, which recurs over and over again. Contact your bend chiropractor . . . we can help!
Treating Low Back Pain With Chiropractic
Chiropractic treatment for low back pain is usually pretty straightforward. Most commonly, it’s simply a matter of adjusting the lower lumbar vertebrae and pelvis to re-establish normal motion and function of your bones and joints. This will allow the muscles to move properly and will help alleviate pain. This is important to understand because pain acts like a dimmer switch to the muscle, with prolonged pain MRI’s have shown there to be atrophy in the low back multifidus which are crucial to stability in the low back. By elevating the pain then following up with core stabilization exercises with rebuild the integrity and stability of the low back.
Chiropractic for the low back has been repeatedly shown to be the most effective treatment for low back pain. In fact, major studies have shown that chiropractic care is more effective, cheaper and has better long-term outcomes than any other treatment. This makes sense because chiropractic care is the only method of treatment that serves to re-establish normal vertebral motion and function in the spine. All other treatments, such as muscle relaxants, pain killers, and bed rest, only serve to decrease the symptoms of the problem and do not correct the problem itself.
What can I do at home for “Low Back Pain”?
Stretching for Low Back Pain
The goal of stretching is to increase function and flexibility, often times when there is instability or dysfunction in the low back the musculature surrounding the area can spasm causing even more pain. Stretching often throughout the day will help alleviate this pain and relax any muscle spasms. Click Here For Low Back Stretches that will help alleviate low back pain and irritation.
Core Stabilization Exercises for Low Back Pain
Whether you have had a history of low back pain or want to be proactive and strengthen your lumbar core muscles. These 4 exercises if done daily will decrease the recurrence of future low back pain and also significantly decrease the chance you will have any low back injuries if you don’t have a history. Click on each exercise to get a printable description and picture of the exercise: Cat Camel, Bird Dog (Quadraped), Dead Bug, and Side Plank
Stayed tuned for more tips and information about chronic pain, sports medicine, and other musculoskelatal conditions. My goal as your Bend Chiropractor is to educate the community on how through some simple lifestyle changes you can find pain relief and improve your quality of life for good.