What To Do With Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain can be a very common condition that can range from a mild annoyance to excruciating pain. There are many causes of lower back pain, and it can be difficult to distinguish when it’s time to take action.

If your lower back pain is starting to impact your daily functions and activities or daily living, it’s worth getting it checked out by your Physiotherapist who has years of experience at dealing with lower back pain.

If you are suffering from lower back pain, you aren’t alone, as this is a condition that most people experience at some point in their life. The cause of lower back pain can be extremely varied as the intensity of pain often does not always match the seriousness of the lower back issue.

There are three broad categories that will help you find out what you need to do if you’re experiencing pain in your lower back.

Mechanical Lower Back Pain

The majority of lower back pain falls into this category. This is lower back pain that is primarily caused by the joints, intervertebral discs, ligaments, muscles and nerves around the lower back. If you’re experiencing lower back pain it’s best to come in and see your Physio to get a diagnosis and a treatment program to help you heal as quickly as possible and help prevent pain reoccurring.

Mechanical low back pain is what physiotherapists specialise in assessing and treating.  This type of pain can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months improve significantly better.  

Symptoms that may indicate a longer prognosis or recovery time include:

·       Pins and needles or numbness or altered sensation/feeling in your legs

·       Weakness in your legs

·       Pain radiating down past your buttocks

·       Significant trauma

Non-Mechanical Back Pain

Non-mechanical lower back pain can result from things such as infections, tumours, kidney stones and a variety of other issues. If you have lower back pain plus one or more of the following symptoms it may indicate non mechanical back pain in some rare cases.

·       Unremitting night pain that isn’t relieved by rest

·       Inability to get into a position that feels comfortable or eases your pain

·       Use of immunosuppressant medication

·       Recent unexplained weight loss

·       Generally feeling unwell or having a fever

If you are experiencing one or a number of these symptoms then it’s important to see your local GP to rule out anything sinister.

Cauda Equina Syndrome

This just so happens to be a nerve disorder that affects the nerve roots at the lower end of your spinal cord, and constitutes a medical emergency. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you will need to be treated immediately:

·       Sudden onset bladder and/or bowel dysfunction

·       Severe or progressive weakness in your lower limb often leading to difficulty walking

These symptoms may also be related to other issues, but could be a clear sign of cauda equina syndrome. If you experience any of them, get yourself to the emergency department as soon as you can.

Our awesome Physios at Medwest see patients with low back pain on a regular basis. We have Physio’s with years of experience that know the ins and outs of treating lower back pain. So if you are experiencing pain that is not give up, book an appointment today!