What is Lower Back Pain and Stiffness?
The lower back is the foundation of the spine. Half of your body’s weight and 100% of everything you pick up in your arms is loaded onto your lower back. The lower back is made up of 5 continuous spinal bones called vertebrae that create an important conduit for the spinal cord to travel through. Branching out from the spinal cord, in-between each of the spinal bones, are nerves that send vital messages to major parts of your body. Lower back pain and stiffness most often occur when one of these spinal bones becomes misaligned, causing the supporting muscles, tendons, ligaments, or discs in the lower back to become irritated and inflamed. This, in turn, affects the central nervous system from properly transmitting vital nerve messages needed to run your body.
Lower back pain or stiffness can run from mildly annoying to severe and debilitating. Common symptoms include:
- Decreased ability to bend and twist
- Sharp stabbing pain
- General overall soreness and tiredness or fatigue in the lower back, a feeling like it will “go out”
- Pain/Tingling/Numbness/Burning that radiates into the buttock, legs, and/or feet
Although lower back pain and stiffness are the most common musculoskeletal pain experienced by Americans, it is not normal and should not be tolerated. Some of the more common causes of lower back and stiffness are sleeping in the wrong position, injury from falls, poor posture especially in front of a computer, motor vehicle accidents, poor lifting mechanics, sitting all day, and pregnancy. Sometimes adult-onset lower back pain or stiffness can even be traced back to damage caused during the birth process itself!
How might Chiropractic Care help those suffering from lower back pain or stiffness?
That is a question that I get asked quite often. It is important to know that chiropractic does not directly treat lower back pain or stiffness. That might catch you off guard, but hear me out. Chiropractic is about one very specific thing, finding and correcting Vertebral Subluxations. What are Vertebral Subluxations? In short, they occur when spinal bones misalign and interfere with the central nervous system’s ability to send vital nerve messages throughout your body. Sometimes those misalignments happen with no pain at all, but if those misalignments occur in the lower back, over time, you will likely experience some of the same lower back symptoms we discussed above. So even though a chiropractor will focus on removing any Vertebral Subluxations that are present, the outcome for most people is that their lower back pain and/or stiffness resolves as well! Chiropractic care not only restores your transmission of vital nerve messages but as a side effect, your lower back pain typically gets better too. It’s a two-for-one.
Here are some of the things our patients with lower back pain and stiffness have said:
- I have reduced pain and discomfort
- There is decreased swelling
- I have noticed an improved ability to turn and twist
- I am more flexible than I was even before the pain started
- The adjustments have allowed me to increase my activity and get back to my former lifestyle
To see if chiropractic care is right for you, Dr. Auger will perform a consultation, thorough chiropractic examination, take x-rays on-site (if necessary), and go over your test results with you. If your tests confirm the presence of Vertebral Subluxation, you are a chiropractic case, and we can help!
Schedule an appointment with us today.