Lower Back Pain and Slipped Disc

Lower Back Pain

Years of abusing your back (poor posture, improper lifting and the lack of body conditioning) make the back prone to injury. The lower back is particularly vulnerable and the dysfunction of its major joints can lead to painful results. Using spinal adjustments and other techniques, your Chiropractor can treat many of the common low back problems described below.

Facet syndrome (back sprain)

This is inflammation of your spinal joints (facet joints). It is most often brought on by a sudden movement or injury, often following years of back neglect, and results in pain and stiffness and difficulty moving. You may find yourself bent off to one side.

Sacroiliac syndrome

This is inflammation of your sacroiliac joint (between your hip and sacrum). It can occur from a sudden injury or movement or start slowly and increase in intensity from repetitive strain. It is felt as a pain in the hip and lower back area and can cause referred pain into the thigh and leg. You have difficulty changing positions and the pain can be excruciating. It is sometimes difficult to differentiate from a facet syndrome or disc herniation. This is the most commonly misdiagnosed back problem, usually called a muscle pull.

Herniated (slipped) discs

The 24 vertebrae of your spine are separated from one another by pads of cartilage called discs. When the soft interior material of a disc pushes out through a tear or weakening in the outer covering, the disc is said to be herniated.

They are brought on by a sudden movement, often lifting or bending, and most commonly affect areas in the spine with the most wear and tear. They may cause severe pain and pins and needles in the back and legs and it may be too painful to move or straighten your back. They take a long time to develop and therefore may take quite a while to get better.

Muscle and ligament Strain

Most often caused by poor posture or an old untreated back injury. Symptoms are chronic backaches with occasional spasms.

Scoliosis (curvature of the spine)

Most common among teenage girls. It is important that it be screened for at the age of 10. Your Chiropractor can show you how. While few symptoms may occur, the long term effects can be quite significant.

Is lower back pain really a serious problem?
First of all, if it makes life more difficult for you, that’s serious in itself. Even if it goes away in a few days, you haven’t really gotten rid of the problem. It will most likely return and, if left untreated, could be more debilitating the next time. This is why it is recommended that you see a Chiropractor at the first sign of back pain.

Lower back pain can also be accompanied by a variety of symptoms, some of which indicate very serious problems.

Leg pain with numbness, tingling and/or weakness?

Back or leg pain with coughing or sneezing?

Difficulty standing up after sitting for any period of time?

Morning stiffness?

Pain after extended walking?

Pain in the hip, buttock, thigh, knee or foot?

Sciatica
The term Sciatica refers to pain, numbness and occasionally muscle weakness in the area supplied by the sciatic nerve, i.e. hip, buttock, posterior thigh, calf and foot. The patient may experience a crawling sensation over the affected area and an inability to walk on his toes or heels due to muscle weakness. There are many possible causes for sciatica, but the most frequent cause has been found to be faulty alignment and mechanics of the lower spine and pelvis.