The Little Known Facts…
- 8 in 10 Americans experience back pain at some point in their lives.
- Back pain is the most common cause of job-related disability and it is a main contributor to missed days at work.
- Without appropriate treatment, 85% of back pain will reoccur within one year.
What are the signs and symptoms of back pain?
The symptoms of back pain vary a great deal. Your pain might be dull, burning, or sharp. You might feel it at a single point or over a broad area. It might be accompanied by muscle spasms or stiffness. Sometimes, it might spread into one or both legs. Here are some, but not all, of the common symptoms of back pain:
- Shooting or stabbing pain
- Pain that radiates down your leg
- Limited flexibility or range of motion of the back
- Inability to stand up straight
What are the most common causes of back pain?
Often, low back pain occurs due to overuse, strain, or injury. This can include sprains or strains of soft tissues (ligaments and muscles), fractures or compression fractures of bones or injuries to the small joints between the bones of the spine. It could be caused by too much bending, twisting, lifting or even too much sitting. There are also several conditions that may contribute to low back pain, such as degenerative disk disease, lumbar spinal stenosis, herniated disks, osteoarthritis and osteoporosis. But just as often, the actual cause of low back pain are not known, and symptoms usually resolve on their own.
What should I do if I hurt my back?
If you hurt your back, apply heat or ice as needed.
The conventional wisdom used to recommend bed rest for back pain but that has since changed. Now bed rest for longer than a day can actually slow your recovery. You should stay as active as you can and follow your normal routine as much as possible.
If your pain lasts more than a few days or gets worse, schedule an appointment with your physical therapist.
Why Peak Performance Physical Therapy?
As experts in improving mobility and reducing pain, we play an important role not only in treating low back pain, but also in preventing it. We can help improve or restore mobility and reduce low back pain without expensive surgery or the side effects of medications. We will formulate an individualized treatment plan that includes the following elements:
- Manual therapy of spinal joints and muscles including manipulation and mobilization, muscle energy technique, soft tissue mobilization and dry needling
- One-on-one instruction in strength and flexibility exercises
- Training for proper lifting, bending, and sitting; for doing chores both at work and in the home; and for proper sleeping positions
- Extensive education to help maintain a healthy back and prevent future problems or injury
Discover the Peak difference!
For more information, read the physical therapists’ guide to lower back pain.