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Low Back Pain, Cause and Cure

Your low back “goes out”, what next?

woman with lower back pain80% of us will experience a disabling (can’t go to work) episode of low back pain during our lives. It is painful, disruptive and scary. Many are worried that they’ll never get better or be normal again.

Good news: Virtually no one needs to be concerned about not getting better. Everybody can get better. But, we all know someone who always has low back pain and it doesn’t get better. What’s with that?

Let’s look at what’s causing it. There are only muscles, ligaments, joints, biomechanics and subluxation. Those are the choices. Within that, there are a few things that each can do to cause misery, and there is usually more than one cause of the misery.

First, the simplest: Muscle strain.
You overdid it, you pulled it and felt it. Those will heal up in 6-8 weeks.

The ligament is a joint stabilizer. It usually takes severe trauma to strain a low back ligament. This requires rehabilitation of the surrounding musculature. Think NFL guys whose job is rehab, day in and day out. Most of us haven’t had that level of trauma unless participating in contact sports or a car accident or something.

The joints do not have blood supply. If you injure the ligament or muscle and don’t correct it, your joint will deteriorate into arthritis. It is not normal ageing, it is your body’s attempt to adapt to the stress. Also, if you put enough strain on it, you can damage the disc. Bulging and herniated discs no longer allow proper segmental motion of the vertebra, now you’ve got other problems with muscles and ligaments. Plus, discs are pain-sensitive.

Second: Biomechanically
If you have one leg shorter, or flat feet, that’s really going to put stress on the low back. Your body adapts to a short leg by rotating the vertebra toward that side. This makes it difficult if you have a left short leg and are a right-handed golfer. The vertebra are already twisted to your left and the follow-through from the swing pulls it even further. Same for shovelling snow. Always throw the snow to the long leg side. Flat feet should have arch support always.  Not only for your low back, but your knees will wear out too.

Third: Subluxation
This is bone out of place irritating the nerves. That messes up the control of the muscles. “Knots” in the muscle are not in the muscle, the problem is in the nerve that won’t stop firing. The nerve controls muscle tone. If the muscle is in spasm, it’s from the nerve and likely due to subluxation in the spine.

What is the answer?

The answer to all of these is not muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatories. Though they do kill the pain momentarily. They do not correct the problem. The problem is in the control in all of these cases. You may need rehab for the ligament, but the joint won’t work right and as a result, the nerve will not conduct properly.

The longer it sits there and your body adapts, the harder it is to correct. The best thing to do is to have regular checkups for your spine. Secondly would be to get in right away when you are aware of a problem. Unfortunately, mostly we see the problem after it has been there years and now has arthritis and degeneration that prevents complete correction. It can still be fixed with time and dedication to your care.

Chiropractic always works. But, it works much better sooner rather than later.

Best wishes,

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