The lower back or lumbar spine is a well-built frame of interconnected bones, nerves, joints, ligaments, and muscles. All these organs work together and maintain harmony to empower the human body with support, flexibility, and strength. However, this structure of the lumbar spine is complex, and it is prone to getting easily injured. Any injury in this area can cause mild to severe lower back pain. In these cases, you may need to consult an experienced physiologist. These days, finding a trusted physio on the Northern Beaches is not a challenging task.
No one knows when an injury may cross your way and affect you with lower back pain. This is why gathering relevant knowledge about lower back pain is essential. Keep reading this blog to learn about types, symptoms, consequences, and treatments.
Different types of back pain
Lower back pain can be divided into many types. Among them, the two most common types are:
Pain in muscles, ligaments, and joints (including facet and sacroiliac joints), is called mechanical pain. This type of pain can be stretched to the lower back, buttocks, and even the top of the legs. Loading of the spine may trigger this kind of pain and the severity may be varied depending on motion, standing, sitting, resting, and other activity.
When a spinal nerve gets inflamed, radicular pain takes place. It follows dermatome under the buttock or legs. It is a sharp pain that feels like an electric or burning sensation. Some people associate it with numbness or weakness as well. This pain has a unique characteristic. Usually, it is felt on only one side of the body. To deal with this type of pain, you may need to consult a physio in Collaroy.
Apart from these, there are many additional sources of pain, such as claudication pain, myelopathic pain, deformity, infections, neuropathic pain, etc. Some people develop lower back pain that does not have any specific cause. In such cases, the initial focus is given to treating the symptoms rather than the cause of the symptoms.
Different Symptoms of back pain
• A dull and aching pain
• Pain reaches the buttocks, legs, and feet
• Pain increases after prolonged sitting
• Pain reduces for changing positions
• Pain increases after waking up and reduces after moving around
Before starting an exam, the healthcare centre will ask you for providing correct information regarding symptoms and medical history. It may look for the following information:
Details about current symptoms
When does the pain get worse or better in the day? How far does the pain extend? Are you experiencing other symptoms at the same time? Is the pain dull, sharp, achy, hot, or stinging? This information will help the pathologist identify the problem.
Level of activity
Is your lifestyle extremely active or sedentary? For instance, do you work sitting at a desk for long? If yes, how long do you work this way? It will help the healthcare professional to determine the severity of the pain.
How many hours do you sleep? What sleep position do you prefer? What kind of pillow are you using? Sleep habits can also help determine the cause of the pain so that the cause can be treated.
Do you feel comfortable in any particular posture? If yes, what is that posture? Posture can also hint at the cause behind the lower back pain
Did you have any recent injuries? Or did you have any past injury? Sometimes past injuries can also be relevant to lower back pain.
Even a physio on the Northern Beaches can also ask you these questions before providing physiotherapy as this information can help to understand the reason behind the pain.
Common treatments for lower back pain
Sometimes basic home remedies work for curing mild or acute pain caused by muscle strain. Some of these remedies are:
• Complete rest
• Activity modification as suggested by a licensed physio in Collaroy/Northern Beaches or your doctor
• Heat or ice therapy (whatever the specialist will suggest considering your current situation)
• Recommended exercises
• Over the counter pain modification
Treatment for severe cases
If the doctors find that your case is severe, they may choose muscle relaxants treatment or narcotic pain modification treatment. Epidural steroid injections can also be used in some cases. In some critical cases, surgery can also be prescribed.
If you are experiencing lower back pain, first, you need to determine what is causing the pain so that you can treat the cause. For mild pain, your doctor may ask you to consult a physio on the Northern Beaches like FlexiFit Physiotherapy. If things get complicated, your doctor may opt for alternative treatments or surgery. However, ignorance may lead you to further issues down the track. So, you should never ignore back pain. If you are feeling lower back pain constantly, visit a doctor immediately.