Did you know that Low back pain is costing America approximately $100 Billion dollars annually? The cost comes from missed work, lack of productivity, and medical expenses. The treatment protocol for out of the medical community is pretty limited and is typically referred out to Physical Therapy which does its best to rehabilitate the back to a functioning order. The question that I have, “Isn’t there a better way”? What if instead of treating the back to help it recover to healthy, let’s find the reason why the back goes out in the first place and fix that?
What Causes Low Back Pain?
For that we need to explore the potential causes. Our low backs are a pivot point for action. Another way to look at it is, we bend to do things, and eventually if the hinge isn’t strong, it will fail. We have powerful muscles in our legs as well as powerful muscles in our core. Together, they create a solid foundation to stabilize and protect the, all-too-critical, pivot point.
When we develop low back pain, it is common that the cause is due to a breakdown in these supportive muscles. Because of the breakdown, there is no longer support and the pain quickly ensues. So how do are muscles breakdown? The number one cause is laziness. If we are not actively strengthening the core, their ability to protect decreases. And then we do something stupid, like lifting with our back instead of our legs, or as we are picking something up, we twist. Results are you get a herniated disc. Ouch!
Another cause of breakdown has more to do with the neck than anything else. Our upper cervical spine dictates the balance of the remaining spine. If it is out of alignment, and the skull is no longer placed correctly, then the horrific chain reaction to balance our eyes begins. Muscles in our back contract and pull, creating a constant tension in the muscles of our lower back. When we do the same stupid things as mentioned before, now we are dealing with muscles that are already too tight and we just put them into over-use mode. The comparison that I share with my patients is the rubber band analogy. If you stretch a rubber band to its capacity, and then push just a little more, the rubber band breaks. Well our muscles are made of, essentially, tons of micro rubber bands. If they are stretched to capacity and you put too heavy of a load on them, you will strain them.
So there you go; these are two of the most common types of injuries that can happen to your spine.
- The first example is more directed to injury to the discs.
- The second is more directed to the supportive back muscles.
The solution to both problems is this: Strengthen your core with appropriate exercise such as planks, or Pilates, and the second is to not do stupid stuff.
If you have strained your back, then calling our office for an appointment is inherently the next step. Our number is simple, 435-674-7515. The sooner that our backs are put back in order, the sooner the pain dissolves.