Back pain is known to be one of the most common complaints amongst the adult population. Studies have even shown that it affects up to 80% of adults at least once in their life.

Why do we have back pain? Back pain can be the result of injury commonly with bending forward and twisting movements as well as lifting heavy objects. Usually these result in muscle strains, ligaments sprains as well as joint and disc irritations or in some cases disc herniations. Other types of back pain can be posture related as well as genetic predispositions such as scoliosis and spondylolystesis just to name a few. Arthritic changes in the vertebral spine as well as narrowing of the discs (degenerative disc disease for example) are natural changes that occur with aging but may in some cause be the cause of back pain.

Back pain can be described as acute, subacute and chronic. The acute phase generally is within the first 4 wks of onset but can persist if a reinjury occurs. The sub-acute phase is the middle phase from 4-12 wks approximately and the chronic phase is from the 12th wk +. The initial phase is the crucial phase therefore it is important to consult in the initial stages of pain to prevent it from becoming chronic pain. Chronic pain typically takes longer to heal as the body naturally compensates and adapts to prevent pain, however other problems may arise.

Physiotherapy has an important role in the rehabilitation and prevention of back pain. With appropriate assessment and diagnosis, the physiotherapist will be able to provide an individualized treatment plan consisting of manual therapy techniques and an exercise program to strengthen the deep abdominals and lumbar spine which will both help relieve your pain and prevent reoccurrence. Posture is also an important contribution to the onset of back pain. Therefore, the physiotherapist can assist in proper positioning at work and educate appropriate posture for daily chores, sleeping positions and many more.

The take home message that I want to transfer to you is the importance of taking care of your back to promote a long, healthy and active life.

If you suffer from back pain don’t wait any longer – make your appointment today!!