Your Guide to Lower Back Pain Management
Back pain can be very debilitating and it's important to know that it will get better. In this guide I will give you a better understanding of why your back hurts and what you can do about it. Feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns.
5 common causes for Lower Back Pain / Lumbago
The first step is to find out what type of back pain you are suffering from so that you can take appropriate action.
Here are some of the most common causes for lower back pain:
- Muscle or ligament strain
- Facett Joint Dysfunction
- Herniated Disc
Muscle, ligament strain and Facett Joint Dysfunction
When the pain you experience are local to the lower back and does not project down the leg you are suffering from muscle / ligament strain or fascett joint dysfunction. This can be accompanied by muscle spasm and cramping and can be both sharp and sudden for example if you lift something. Or it can have a slower progression aggravated by for example an activity like walking or standing for long period of times. Normal recovery time is 12 weeks but most often it can be much faster with for example Shockwave-therapy and Osteopathic treatment.
Facett Joint Dysfunction
Pain caused by irritation of the facet joints is different then muscular pain in that immediately gets agitated by movement. As soon as you start moving the joint it hurts. It does not radiate pain down the arms in the way that you would expect if a neve was involved. The pain is sharp and mainly local. If left untreated it can start to effect the surrounding nerve endings also and pain can start radiating down the hips and legs.
Herniated Disc and Sciatica
When a disc ruptures and starts to press on the surrounding nerves most often you get sharp pain shooting down the back of either one one or both legs. The pain differs from muscular pain in the way that it is usually more specific and also projects all the way down to the toes. Whereas muscular pain projection often stops in the thigh area. Recovery time can be up from 12 weeks up to a year and can sometimes require surgery. Most often it will get much better with Osteopathic treatment and Rehab exercises.
True or false Sciatica?
Sciatica is a condition caused by a herniated disc that puts pressure on the Sciatic nerve. This give off a sharp shooting pain down the back of one or both legs. There is a condition called false Sciatica which is not caused by a ruptured disc but by tight muscles in the buttock region. Often worsened by sitting. This is easier to treat and commonly resolved within 4 weeks.
Arthritis is caused by wear and tear of the joints of the lower back and can cause agitating pain and irritation in the area. While there is not much to do about the damaged joint cartilage there is a lot you can do to alleviate the pain. In my own clinical experience the as long as the arthritis or joint damage is not very severe causing major changes in range of motion you have a good chance of relieving much of the pain through treating the muscles and joints around the affected area. Most often all of the pain are not coming from the damaged cartilage but also from the surrounding muscles and ligaments.
Lower Back Pain can be very debilitating but usually resolves within 2 - 6 weeks with the help of Osteopathic treatment and rehab exercises.