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Low Back Pain: Can Physiotherapy Help?

Eighty percent (80%) of people will experience lower back pain at some stage of their life. Back pain is a symptom caused by numerous bio-psychosocial conditions. It is one of the most common reasons for people missing work and seeing a doctor or physiotherapist. Fortunately, most back pain is caused by musculoskeletal conditions and can be readily treated with great success.

Generally, lower back pain is something you can avoid with the added knowledge of some back education, back care strategies and back exercises. Please seek advice specific to your low back pain.

What Can Cause Severe Low Back Pain?

Acute low back pain is most often caused by a sudden injury to the muscles and ligaments supporting the back. The pain may be caused by muscle spasms or a strain or tear in the muscles and ligaments. But occasionally, it can have a more sinister cause.

Sudden Low Back Pain Causes

- Muscle Strain or Muscle Spasms

- Spinal Disc Injury

- Compression fractures e.g. Osteoporosis

- Sciatica

- Spine Cancer

Non-Musculoskeletal Causes of Low Back Pain

Despite most low back pain is musculoskeletal in origin, other health conditions can cause low back pain:

- Abdominal aortic aneurysm

- Infection of the spine (osteomyelitis, discitis)

- Kidney infection or kidney stones

- Spondyloarthropathies: e.g. rheumatoid arthritis, psoriatic arthritis.

- Female reproductive organs: e.g. pregnancy complications, ovarian cysts or cancer, endometriosis.

Physiotherapy is a type of treatment that helps to improve the movement and function of your joints and muscles. If you have back pain, physiotherapy can help to reduce it and get you back to normal mobility. It can also help you to make changes that reduce the chances of hurting your back again. Physiotherapists use a wide range of treatments and techniques to help with back pain, as well as offering advice on looking after your back.

What will happen when I see a Physiotherapist?

When you first see a physiotherapist, they’ll take a detailed medical history. They’ll ask you questions about any medical conditions you have, your lifestyle and any medications you take. They’ll also want to know what symptoms you’ve been experiencing, and what tends to trigger them. Next, they’ll do a detailed physical examination, including looking at how you move and how your back is functioning. They may also do a neurological assessment to see how well your nerves are functioning.

Your Physiotherapist will explain what treatment they recommend, and how they expect this might help your back pain. They should also warn you about any potential risks of the treatment. If you’re unsure about anything, don’t be afraid to ask. It’s important that you fully understand what your physiotherapist is proposing because you’ll be asked to sign your consent to go ahead with treatment.

Visit our professional Physiotherapist at The Bali Physio for more info on how to recover from your low back pain.


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