Low Back Pain

Low back pain is one of the most common injuries a person can experience during their lifetime. Roughly 80% of people will experience low back pain at least once in their life. The vast majority of people (up to 90%) who experience low back pain will recover. However, the likelihood of recurrence is increased.

The majority of low back pain tends to be mechanical.

This is characterised by pain that is localised and usually influenced by movements such as bending, sitting, standing, and walking. Mechanical back pain is primarily caused by muscles, ligaments and/or joints.

Sometimes after a back injury, you may experience what is called radicular pain. This refers to pain and at times altered sensations down your leg. Typically, these symptoms only affect one side and can cause weakness, numbness, burning pain, and/or pins and needles. Radicular pain is caused by an irritation of the nerves as it exits the spine in the low back.

If you experience low back pain:

It is important to be assessed by a physiotherapist to allow for optimal recovery. The majority of low back pain can be effectively managed through physiotherapy and exercise.

Exercise has been shown to be the most important factor in recovering from and preventing the recurrence of low back pain. There is no specific exercise that is best, however it is important to avoid aggravating activities when performing your exercises. This can include walking and gentle pain free stretches until you can be reviewed by your physio. Your physiotherapist can help provide a tailored, individualised exercise program to suit your needs.

So, if you suffer from low back pain, remember to keep moving!