According to research, lower back pain is a prominent global condition, with a 7.5% prevalence worldwide. It is described as discomfort or pain, ranging from a dull ache to a sharp stabbing sensation. It is usually felt anywhere along the spine or in the back muscles. The back pain can last for a few days or weeks. However, chronic back pain can persist for months or even years.
Various factors, including bad posture, muscle strain, sprain, or other medical disorders such as herniated discs, can cause back pain. Additionally, lifestyle factors like stress, poor nutrition, and lack of exercise can also cause back pain.
Importance of Physical Therapy for Back Pain
Physiotherapy is essential to managing back pain. Exercise, manual therapy, and other methods reduce pain, increase mobility, and prevent further injuries. Besides, well-planned back exercises can also help treat the underlying factors contributing to back pain, such as muscle weakness, bad posture, and improper body mechanics.
Some exercises like squats, planks, and many great stretches, pelvic twists, or the cat-cow stretch can go a long way if done daily. It is the best way to fight minor back pain due to long hours of sitting or standing. Let’s look further into what you can do to help and prevent chronic back pain.
Physical Therapy Techniques for Back Pain
Physical therapy is an effective method for managing and treating back pain, with physiotherapists using a variety of back pain relief exercises with their patients. The most effective physical therapy methods for back pain include the following:
It is a hands-on technique that physiotherapists use for back pain relief. There are three primary categories of manual treatment, each used for different treatment purposes.
- Soft Tissue Mobilization
This method involves applying pressure to the soft tissues around the affected back area, such as the muscles and tendons. It helps lessen tension and inflammation, boosts circulation, and promotes healing.
- Joint Mobilization
This technique involves mild joint movements to enhance the range of motion and reduce stiffness. Joint injuries and conditions like arthritis or inflammation are frequently treated with this method.
- Spinal Manipulation
It is a joint manipulation mainly used to treat herniated discs and sciatica. During spinal manipulation, the physiotherapist applies a controlled force to the joints of the spine, which can help realign the vertebrae and alleviate stiffness.
These upper and lower back exercises can be very effective for people with severe back pain and are great for back pain relief when incorporated into our daily routine.
- Strengthening Exercises
These exercises strengthen the muscles and the soft tissues around your spine. You can make a routine that is most effective for you by adding variations of the exercises mentioned below:
- Range of Motion Exercises
It is crucial to keep your body moving. Otherwise, it may result in stiffness and soreness in your back and other joints. However, there are certain times when staying in the same position is unavoidable. Here are some stretches you can try:
- Cat-Cow Stretch
- Knee-to-Chest Stretch
- Pelvic Tilts
- Spinal Twist
- Flexibility Exercises
Another great way to keep your lower back healthy is by increasing flexibility. By stretching your lower back, you prevent injuries that can be caused due to stiffness, like tearing a tendon. These are some prime stretches for the lower back and hips:
- Hamstring Stretch
- Quadriceps Stretch
- Hip Flexor Stretch
- Piriformis Stretch
- Posture Correction
Bad posture is the most common reason for back pain in young adults. Slouching puts immense pressure on the lower back. Physical therapist helps their patients with posture to alleviate back pain.
- Ergonomic Assessment
Physical therapists may also assess a patient’s work environment and suggest modifications to reduce the risk of back pain.
Pain Management Techniques for Back Pain
Numerous pain management treatments can be used to assist with back pain physiotherapy:
- Pain and inflammation can often be reduced by Heat and Cold therapy. The affected area may benefit from applying a heat pack or cold compress to assist the muscles in relaxing and easing the pain.
- Another method that stimulates the nerves and lessens pain is known as transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS).
- Ultrasonic therapy employs high-frequency sound waves to penetrate deep into the tissues, aiding pain relief and healing.
- Acupuncture and massage therapy are additional useful methods for treating back pain since they can ease muscle tension and boost circulation.
Lifestyle Changes for Back Pain
A good change to your lifestyle can help massively with back pain, as they commonly stem from bad posture and unhealthy habits. Caring for your body is key to preventing pain like lower back pain. You can start with these things:
- Keeping a healthy weight decreases back strain and promotes overall health.
- Wearing appropriate footwear that provides sufficient support helps to distribute weight over the feet effectively and lowers the chance of injury.
- Avoiding extended periods of standing or sitting can assist in reducing stiffness and muscle strain.
- Use proper lifting techniques to prevent injury when carrying big goods, including knee bending and maintaining a straight back.
- Stress management techniques, such as deep breathing exercises and mindfulness meditation, can assist in reducing muscle tension and promote relaxation, resulting in less back pain.
Keeping active, such as walking or swimming, can assisting easing back pain. Maintaining consistency in treatment through routine physical therapy appointments or at-home exercises is crucial to control the pain and to stop additional injury. If the pain persists or gets worse, contact a doctor.
Get Rid Of Back Pain The Right Way
Back pain can be treated and avoided using a variety of physiotherapy, pain-management techniques, and lifestyle adjustments. Manual therapy, therapeutic exercises, and posture correction are among the methods that can increase mobility and lessen pain.
Techniques for pain treatment include heat and cold therapy, TENS, and massage therapy can offer relief. Lifestyle adjustments such as weight management, stress management, and good lifting practices can help prevent further injury.
Remember that consistency is essential for controlling back discomfort and avoiding further harm. Therefore take care of your back, get treatment from a professional when necessary, and incorporate preventative measures into your everyday routine.