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Active Healing Centre

Oh, My Aching Back!

Treatment Stages

A 2003 survey of back pain found that as many as 80% of the population will experience a back problem at some time in their life. Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work.

Seemingly odd questions (ie. your sleeping posture) tell me whether your low back pain stems from sleeping on your stomach, which can also bring on neck strain as you turn your head to breathe.

FYI: to break the habit of sleeping on your stomach, tape ping-pong balls to your chest

When you lay on your stomach, it puts your body into a hyperlordotic (sway back) position and increases the strain to your low back and added pressure to your spine. Other factors are tight hamstrings, restricted upper back muscles or leaning too far forward.

Low back pain is one of the primary causes of visits to the doctor, and if you’ve ever had the misfortune to experience this, you’ll understand why it literally is a Pain in the…

Getting past the pain is the first issue, but preventing a recurrence is the next important stage. Utilizing the RICE method of pain-management, Ice is the critical component to decrease inflammation of the affected area (wrap a bag of ice in a towel, and apply it for a maximum of 20-minutes to the affected area). This is followed by Rest, Compression, and Elevation.

The next stage is getting the appropriate therapy (muscular, physical, or skeletal) for treatment.

The final stage is to get sufficient exercise to prevent a recurrence of symptoms. With exercise, try stretching (cat/cow, knee-to-chest) to alleviate any restrictions, followed by strengthening (pelvic tilt, bird-dog) exercises, which should prevent a relapse.

REFERENCE

See your doctor if the pain persists or doesn’t go away within a day or two.
See your therapist if treatment is recommended.