Chiropractors Helping Chronic Back pain is All About the Cause!

With weather turning unseasonably warm in February and hopefully remaining mild in March, Chicagoans and Lincoln Parkers will likely spend more time outside running, biking, and exercising.  While staying active is great for one’s health goals, and objectives toward reducing injury, previous injury to either one’s lower back or an area outside of one’s back (ankle, hip, or knee) can result in lower back pain.  The numbers are unfortunately staggering in the US: 80% of Americans will likely suffer some episode of lower back pain in their life, and 20-25% of these individuals will have future episodes, making them chronic.  If your pain becomes chronic, visiting a sports chiropractor (if this is from a sports injury or from exercise) can help your pain both now, and in the future by following a few easy tips.

With lower back pain, determining the root cause can lead to proper care by a chiropractor.  A chiropractor you seek out should thoroughly obtain a history, perform a comprehensive exam, and take X-rays (if needed based on the complaint and exam findings) to fully determine the cause of your back pain. Often, most injuries are related to overuse and repetitive movement to one’s lower back due to a muscle imbalance present.  The person may have developed a previous injury to their lower back or a different part of their body and never properly rehabbed to fully heal.  This can lead to compensation causing back pain due to certain muscles becoming overactive and other muscles not activating enough.  The chiropractor should be able to explain how this injury happened and the next steps regarding treatment to heal from your injury both present and in the future.

Per treatment recommendations, chiropractic manipulation will likely be performed to reduce inflammation & pain, and improve movement.  Soft tissue work, involving Active Release Techniques (ART) should be done to improve flexibility, and mobility of the lower back and surrounding hips.  Lastly, and likely most critical, will include corrective/rehab exercises to address the following: core and gluteal activation and strength, improve mobility of the hips, and middle back, and flexibility of the lower back and hips.  Specific exercises targeting all 3 aspects to your rehab may differ from patient to patient depending on the cause.  These treatment elements will create an immediate and lasting impact to improve your current pain, but also prevent future episodes.  The corrective exercises will need to be done for months, if not indefinitely, to change how you move and to facilitate healing.  In certain cases where the cause cannot be fixed completely, one can manage their back pain effectively through periodic visits to the chiropractor for treatment and new rehab exercises to challenge you in your recovery. Following treatment recommendations of performing your exercises consistently at 2-4 days/week for an indefinite period of time will create permanent change.

It may take a few visits to have your pain under control as every case is different. As you follow treatment recommendations from your sports chiropractor, you will develop and harness the tools to keep you active and healthy in the sports and activities you enjoy most.

Brian Marion, DC, CCSP, ART, SMFA, CKTP

Lincoln Park Chiropractic 2202 N. Lincoln Ave Ste 1 Chicago, IL 60614

(773) 248-2790

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