"If there is only one thing you need to know about back pain, you need to know that you can make it better"
Understanding Back Pain, Usual Causes & Treatments
Chronic Lower Back Pain
Overview of Lower Back Pain
Low back pain can be a debilitating problem for many Singaporeans due to our lifestyles in this digital age. Up to eighty percent of Singaporeans will experience lower back pain at least once in their life and at some point, the problem will return if it doesn’t get completely treated.
What Causes Lower Back Pain?
How does low back pain originate? There are many causes that can contribute to low back pain:
- Lifting heavy objects
- Desk bound job
- Constant Sitting or Standing
- Heavy backpacks
- Twisting or sudden motions
- Accidents, slips, and falls
- Sports Injuries
If the low back issues are not treated in an appropriate and timely manner, it could potentially turn into a chronic, severe problem that may require medical intervention down the road.
When a particular problem arises with your back, there are sequences of complications that can occur as it pertains to your spine. The first is that the nerve becomes pinched. At this course of time you may or may not experience pain.
The second event that can happen is that it is out of alignment, so there’s going to be some wear and tear. Much like the tire of a car that has shifted out of alignment, if you were to continue to drive it will create wear and tear among the wheel.
The third event is that the vertebrae will become fixated. Our joints rely on motion to keep them lubricated and healthy. But if its immobile, then the joint will start to degenerate over time which can lead to complications with your health.
Signs and Symptoms
There are many signs and symptoms that are associated with low back pain:
- If the pain is typically ongoing (sudden flareup may occur over the course of a couple weeks)
- Pain may travel to either side of the buttocks and eventually continues down your leg and into the foot
- Burning, tingling, and numbness sensations associated with the low back pain
- Muscle weakness within the area of concern
- The pain is usually worsened during prolong periods of time such as standing or sitting
Once you have identified the cause, there are a number of treatment options. One approach is drugs. While this offers temporary relief, they can’t correct the functional problems of your spine nor will it take pressure off of the nerve.
If this problem were to persist and eventually get worse, then surgical intervention would be needed.
With chiropractic care for back pain, the doctor will incorporate specific adjustments to allow proper function and restoration within the spine and body, as well as prevention of any future flare ups. It is safe and non-invasive.
Overview of Slipped Disc
Slipped disc is the most common cause of back pain. In the U.S., it costs the health care system more than US$50 billion annually. It can happen to anyone, especially athletes with intense training programmes, and can severely hinder their sports performance. If left untreated, they can be out of action for months.
What Causes Slipped Disc?
Between the vertebrae of our spine, there are discs which act as shock absorbers.
These discs have a thick outer ring of cartilage with a gel-like centre, called the nucleus. When the spine is impacted, the vertebrae compress the discs, and the discs absorb the shock to prevent damage to the spine.
However, sometimes one or more of the discs could be over-compressed, causing the nucleus to push on the cartilage ring too much, resulting in a slipped disc. When that happens, the slipped disc may push against the spinal nerves and can cause various symptoms, ranging from pain to weakness and numbness.
Most existing non-invasive treatments only relieve, not treat, the symptoms. It includes rest, analgesia (including orally-ingested and externally applied), cold compresses or steroid injection. If the symptom persists, the doctor may suggest invasive treatment, which can be costly.
Surgery for Slipped Disc?
Surgery to treat slipped disc starts from a few thousand dollars. But that’s not the only cost. Due to the procedure’s invasive nature, the downtime can range from a few weeks to more than six months. Depending on the severity of the condition, some physical rehabilitation may be needed, which also costs money.
But now, before you go under the knife, there’s still one more reliable non-invasive treatment you can try.
At Singapore Pain Solutions, we offer Spinal Decompression Therapy, which aims to help patients with slipped disc conditions.
What Does This Mean For Me?
Get yourself diagnosed as soon as you feel pain or numbness, especially at your limbs. Take note of any pain after an extended period of standing or sitting.
Overview of Scoliosis
Scoliosis can be simply defined as the spine bending towards left or right side abnormally and it can range from moderate to severe. Typically when you look at the x-ray from the back view, it will appear to an S Shape. While any part of the spine can be affected, the most common regions are the chest area (thoracic scoliosis) or the lower part of the back (lumbar scoliosis).
Scoliosis is typically seen more often in young girls and boys. As they age, the curvature can progress even worse. It is best to try to resolve the situation early on rather than just waiting to see if it will clear up on its own.
What Causes Scoliosis?
There are many causes of scoliosis:
- Congenital scoliosis – A bone abnormality that is present at birth
- Neuromuscular scoliosis – A result of abnormal muscles or nerves.
- Degenerative scoliosis – These may result from injuries that have been sustained over the years. These conditions can range from traumatic to illness related. Those who also have osteoporosis may be susceptible to scoliosis
- Idiopathic scoliosis. This is the most common of all scoliosis. This simply means that there is an unidentifiable cause. Some theories exist that it could be inherited.
If scoliosis were to progress, there could be some noticeable physical changes as well as some postural abnormalities that would affect the overall health, integrity, and condition of the spine.
When scoliosis is present, the rotational abnormalities of the bones can create pressure on the nerves as well as produce musculature imbalances.
Confounding factors even worse is if the scoliosis were to progress so far as to exert pressure among the vital organs.
So how then can chiropractic care help?
As a chiropractor, we take a systematic, full body approach towards evaluating the spine.
Not only do we incorporate spinal adjustments and rehab, but we also utilize the Scoliroll as part of our protocol. Many of our patients have noticed significant results based on our procedures.
Get a Professional Consultation for Back Pain
If you are suffering from pain or discomfort in areas such as the lower back or neck, the first thing to do is to arrange for a consultation for a professional chiropractor review.
To find out more about chiropractic, do check out our chiropractic care guide in Singapore.
We are also offering promotional packages for NSFs and 50% discount off chiropractic consultancy for teachers and nurses!