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Osteopathy can help manage your low back pain

Our experienced Osteopaths in Eaglemont can help you understand and manage your low back pain

 

Did you know that a whopping 50% of Aussies suffered from lower back pain in the last month alone? Low back pain is the leading cause of disability globally – with more than 540 million people affected by low back pain at any one time. While we understand that research suggests that most low back pain is short term (acute) and will resolve on its own, recurrence rates are about 85%. We often find there is a repeated cycle of aggravation and poor patient education. The Osteopaths at Health and Balance understand that getting a proper assessment and management plan in place for low back pain is important to having a better long term prognosis and decreased incidence of reaggravation.

 

Low back pain can be categorised according to how long it has been present:

 

  • Acute low back pain – pain that lasts less than 6 weeks
  • Sub acute low back pain – pain that lasts 6-12 weeks
  • Chronic back pain –  pain that persists for 12 or more weeks, even after the initial injury/cause of acute low back pain has resolved.

About 20 percent of people affected by acute low back pain can go on to develop chronic low back pain. The aim of early management is to decrease initial pain and inflammation, educate and empower. This early intervention is aimed at preventing acute pain from turning into long term chronic low back pain. 

 

Low back pain can also be categorised according to cause:

 

  • Non specific low back pain – is not caused by any specific pathology. It is usually as a result of joint or muscle strain and is often due to mechanical problems. This is the majority of what we see in practice with over 90% of low back pain considered to fall into this category. This is well managed with manual therapy, specific exercises and activity/posture modification.
  • Specific low back pain – is less common and is caused by more serious conditions such as fracture, arthritis, scoliosis, nerve impingement, growths, disc problems or infections.

 

Many of these more serious pathology can be excluded by your Osteopath by taking a comprehensive medical history, a proper physical exam and assessment. In some cases further investigations such as X-ray or MRI might be required.

 

In most cases of low back pain, be it a simple strain or a more serious pathology, the symptoms and condition can be managed well. One of the most important things is to understand the condition and have a proactive plan to manage it. This might be a regular exercise routine or avoiding specific aggravating factors.

 

The more fear and misunderstanding surrounding a persons experience of pain and perceived progression of the pain, the worse the prognosis and symptoms can be. So education about the condition and knowledge is the key.

 

We understand that low back pain can be inconvenient so we want to help get you back to your regular activities as soon as we can. Our osteopaths understand that empowering you as a client to heal actively and with good understanding is essential for better outcomes in managing low back pain.

 

 

Osteopathy and Lower Back Pain

  • Your osteopath will perform a complete assessment and determine a diagnosis of your pain.
  • Osteopathic techniques including soft tissues, joint articulation, muscle stretching and mobilisation may be used to help reduce muscle tension of the lumbar spine, hips and pelvis.
  • Gentle exercises to strengthen and support the lower back.
  • Chat about some small modifications you can make to your daily routine to avoid aggravating the symptoms
  • Recent research suggests that keeping active and moving the lower back rather then bed rest will help decrease pain and improve function faster. Bed rest also associated with other complications such as depression and anxiety

 

 

References:

 

  1. https://www.monash.edu/news/articles/global-burden-of-low-back-pain-a-consequence-of-medical-negligence-and-misinformation   
  2. https://www.ninds.nih.gov/Disorders/Patient-Caregiver-Education/Fact-Sheets/Low-Back-Pain-Fact-Sheet
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3410134/

 

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