Conditions We Treat

Back Pain

Back pain is debilitating and can affect all areas of life including work, leisure time and sporting activities.

Back Pain Treatment Noble Park

Chiropractic may be the solution to your back pain and enable you to return to the movement and activity you love. Chiropractors can treat the cause of back pain using hands on techniques without medicine or surgery. Chiropractors are highly qualified and experienced health professionals who understand the cause of back pain and are skilled in making your recovery as smooth and fast as possible.

Causes of Back Pain

Back pain is an extremely common condition with up to 80% of the population experiencing back pain at some time during the lives. Although the underlying pathology of low back pain is usually not serious, with the vast majority of patients recovering within 6 weeks, it is a significant cause of pain in the community and can have a considerable impact on people’s day to day lives.

Back pain commonly occurs as a result of the following:

  • Strains and strains of muscles and ligaments (most common)
  • Disc injuries
  • Postural stress
  • Sciatica
  • Structural problems

Below is information about two very common causes of back pain: 

Most episodes of back pain come on as a result of straining muscles or ligaments. It’s a bit like when you roll your ankle playing sport. In this instance, the ankle joint gets put in an awkward position which causes the soft tissues (usually the ligaments) to be overstretched. The ligament will be damaged. This will result in inflammation, muscle tightness/spasm, stiffness at the ankle joint and pain. Similarly, a back that gets put in an awkward position can cause a muscle or ligament in the back to be overstretched. As a result, inflammation, joint stiffness, muscle tightness/spasm may occur. These things can lead to pain.

It is thought that wear and tear (degeneration) at the discs may cause back pain. This is more commonly associated with low back (lumbar) pain than pain higher up in the back.

Bulging or ruptured (also called herniated) discs are another common cause of back pain. The discs are a spongy material that acts like cushions between the vertebrae in your spine. Sometimes, this spongy stuff bulges out of place and presses on a nerve. This nerve pressure causes pain in the back and also pain running down the back of the legs (referred to as sciatica).

Assessment

Your chiropractor will perform a detailed history, orthopaedic, neurological and spinal examination to determine the exact cause of your lower back pain.

Treatment

Chiropractic treatment of back pain focuses on restoring function to poorly moving spinal joints, as well as reducing muscle tension and increasing muscle strength. This results in improved movement, reduced pain and deceased nerve irritation.

Treatments are tailored to the individual case usually consisting of spinal and soft tissue mobilisation, core stabilization advice, strengthening exercises, stretching and heat/cold therapy. Please contact us to arrange your comprehensive lower back consultation to help identify the exact cause of your back pain and begin a course of corrective care today!

Common asked questions about back pain

There are many activities and situations that cause back pain. These include: bending, lifting, twisting, jumping, driving, sitting for too long (at the computer or on the couch), sitting on inappropriate seating, bending to brush your teeth, sneezing (yes, sneezing!), coughing, dancing, playing sport and maintaining poor posture…and the list goes on. Most activities of our daily lives have the potential to cause back pain. Even an awkward sleeping posture can cause the onset of back pain.

Bending, lifting and twisting were listed first above for good reason. These activities are commonly linked to the onset of back pain – particularly acute, sudden-onset back pain. Bending at the back rather than the knees is especially hazardous to the back. Furthermore, when these movements are combined such as lifting and twisting or bending and twisting or (please don’t try this at home) all three together then the risk of getting back pain tends to be increased.

Sometimes people have no idea why their pain starts. Or, it will start in the process of doing a mundane action (for e.g., putting their shoes on) that they have a done million times before. Understandably, this only adds to a person’s anxiety and concern.

Back pain can also be the end result of an accumulative problem. A minor injury that, aggravated repeatedly, can eventually produce pain. That minor, seemingly insignificant twinge you felt three days ago whilst bending to put a file away may have been the origin of the pain you started feeling this morning when you got out of bed and then got worse on the train to work.

Whatever the situation may be; don’t panic. Get to your chiropractor for prompt assessment.

Despite the high prevalence of back pain only a small percentage of people end up requiring surgery. In fact, it is not common for a person experiencing uncomplicated back pain (and assuming no serious underlying condition) to require surgical intervention. Furthermore, those people who become candidates for surgery do so usually only after all avenues of conservative care are exhausted.

Most people who experience non-complicated back pain that settles well in the short term and who do not have a significant history of back pain are usually no more prone to further episodes than those who have never had back pain. The issue starts to get a little more clouded when dealing with a person who has had several episodes of back pain or one major episode such as a disc prolapse. Whatever the situation, most people can do a few things for themselves that may allow them to avoid back pain.

Tips for looking after your back

  • Doing something as simple as walking regularly can benefit your back greatly. Swimming is another very helpful form of exercise for your back. Both these types of exercise are low impact and therefore will reduce strain on your back. More importantly, they help strengthen your back.
  • Develop Flexibility. Stretching regularly will help keep you lose at your back and other areas (shoulders, hips). This aids the movement and alignment of spinal joints. Your practitioner will be able to suggest a stretching regimen suitable for you.
  • Get Stronger. The muscles that surround your spine (the core muscles that also include your abdominal muscles) work to protect your back whilst you move. It only follows that the stronger these muscles are then more protection your back will be afforded. Strength work that you may wish to consider include: Pilates, gym work, exercises on a Swiss ball or your practitioner can give you a few simple exercises to do at home.
  • Lose weight. This one is as plain as the nose on your face or the flab on your tummy. Less weight means less strain on the back particularly the low back. If you’re above the healthy weight range and you have no excuses, get cracking!
  • Maintain good posture. Remain vigilant regarding the manner in which you stand and sit. Don’t slouch.