|Back Pain |
If your back hurts,
don't ignore the pain. Physiotherapists have the training to
correctly assess the problem and provide safe, effective treatment.
For rapid recovery, see your physiotherapist early.
|WHAT CAUSES BACK
Poor posture stresses
your spine. Ligaments are overstretched, muscles tire and joints and
nerves are put under pressure.
back muscle strains quickly improve on their own, but more severe
strains will need physiotherapy treatment to relieve pain and
too far or too quickly makes them tear and bleed into surrounding
tissues, causing swelling and pain. Motor vehicle and sporting
accidents are common causes.
are anchored to the vertebrae, above and below, so they cannot
'slip' out of place. They can wear down with age, but most disc
problems arise from injury. Discs can bulge (prolapse), herniate or
sciatic nerves run from the lower back, through the buttocks and
down the back of your legs. Irritation anywhere along this pathway
will cause pain in the back and legs.
Vertebral and facet
joints can be affected by arthritis, causing degeneration and
inflammation within the joint and the growth of bony spurs on the
edges of the vertebrae.
Everyday activities can
|How Your Back
Your back is a complex system of interlocking components:
||Vertebrae are the bones that make up the spinal
||Discs separate the vertebrae and act as shock
||Facet joints between the vertebrae guide spinal
||Ligaments hold the vertebrae together.
||Muscles are attached to the bones. They control and
produce movement. |
|PREVENTING BACK PAIN
Here is some useful advice to help you prevent back pain:
With your feet shoulder-width apart, bend at
the hips and knees. Grip the load firmly and hold it close to your
body, tighten your stomach muscles and use the strong muscles of
your legs to lift. Keep your back as straight as possible. Avoid
twisting - turn by using your feet, not your back.
Think tall: chest lifted, shoulders relaxed,
chin tucked in and head level. Posture should be stable, balanced
and relaxed when sitting, walking or standing.
Don't stay seated for too long - stand up, stretch and walk
around. The right back support will also help.
Stay in shape - healthy body-weight is less strain on your
back. Your physiotherapist can show you how to keep your back
flexible and strong with correct back and abdominal exercises.
Good support from your car seat will prevent
back pain. If you need more lower back support, use a lumbar roll or
a rolled-up towel.
Your mattress should be
firm enough to support your natural shape.
Can Help |
Almost all Australian doctors refer patients
with back pain to physiotherapists in preference to other health
practitioners. Depending upon the cause and type of pain,
physiotherapists treat back pain in a variety of ways:
Manipulative physiotherapists have post-graduate training
in the management of musculoskeletal disorders and have more ways to
help your back move well and stay well.
||advice and early activation ( recent research
indicates that one of the most important treatments for low
back pain is that the patient is encouraged to move)
||mobilisation/ manipulative physiotherapy
||specific stabilisation exercises
treatments' should not be required once your back has been
successfully treated by a physiotherapist. If severe pain persists,
other causes will need to be investigated. Your physiotherapist can
order x-rays or recommend that you see a doctor.
Finding a Physiotherapist
A doctor's referral is
not required to see a physiotherapist in private practice.
Physiotherapists in private practice are listed in the Yellow Pages
under 'Physiotherapists'. Physiotherapists also work in public
hospitals and community health centres.
A proportion of
treatment costs is rebatable under all higher table health insurance
|By courtesy of the Australian Physiotherapy Association