Low back pain is a very common condition, especially in today’s society where we spend prolonged periods of time sitting and less time staying active. Although low back pain seems to have escalated in recent years, Vallfors (1985) stated that low back pain was the leading cause for absence from the workplace in the 80's which means the socioeconomic impact of the condition was huge even then. It has also been reported in research over decades that low back pain was the second most common reason for visiting a doctor (Cunningham 1984; NCHS 1975; Andersson 1977).
More recently (Balagué, 2012) tells us that low back pain can affect up to 60-80% of the entire population at some point in their lives. The lifetime prevalence of low back pain can be as high as 84%, and chronic low back pain is said to be around 23%. Balagué also states that 11-12% of these sufferers are disabled by their low back pain.
It has been discovered that low back pain is one of the four most common conditions in the world and is the number one cause of years lived with disability in well-developed countries (Vos, 2010). According to (The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, 2008) low back pain is very common among working adults and particularly those aged between 40-60.
For low back pain to be considered chronic it must be present in excess of 12 weeks (Airaksinen, 2006). The reason behind this timescale is that most connective tissues of the low back are believed to heal successfully after 6-12 weeks (Andersson, 1999).
Private treatment can help
I consider myself extremely lucky to live in the United Kingdom and benefit from the national health service. My family have benefited majorly from the NHS to the extent where my younger cousin would no longer be with us had it not been for her, in our eyes, heroic general practitioner (who identified a brain tumour from a basic eye inspection).
Although for many conditions the NHS provide great care and a full recovery, studies have established that 25-33% percent of low back pain patients treated public healthcare facilities have a re-occurence of their low back pain after 1 year of their initial visit (Andersson et al, 1997; Nachemson et al, 2000).
According to (Burns, 2011) using a hands-on treatment-based approach is significantly more effective in reducing pain and disability than current clinical practice guidelines.
In a typical session we of course speak to you about your pain to develop an understanding of what is going on. We then observe movements and assess structures of the low back and associated areas to form a diagnosis of your pain. Our priority here is ruling out more severe issues where surgery may be required and honing-in on the possible causes behind your pain.
Treatment techniques available:
- Electrotherapy: Interferential current (IFC) and Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) are the most commonly used forms of electrotherapy (Facci et al, 2011).
- Massage: Massage promotes a local analgesic (pain relieving) effect.
- Joint mobilisation: Assesses for stiffness or too much movement. Treats stiffness and dysfunction (Petty, 2011).
- Soft tissue mobilisation: This helps eliminate pain and dysfunction by allowing tighter restrictive tissues to move more freely.
- Muscle Energy Techniques: MET's are stretching techniques that can reduce spasm and tightness within muscles.
- Corrective exercises: Corrective stretches and exercises are used help to re-educate and train dysfunctional structures into working optimally.
Whether you have came for one session or require regular treatment, we provide systematic guidance and communication to help you with your rehabilitation process.
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