Chronic back pain
Why Won’t My Back Pain Go Away is one of the most common questions we hear from patients when they come in for an appointment. Unsurprisingly it’s also one of the most common conditions for patients seeking help from our physical therapy clinics. When suffering from back pain, it’s best to start the recovery process as soon as possible rather than hoping the pain will subside, as this could develop into chronic back pain. “If you wait to do something about lower back pain until it has become debilitating, you’ve waited too long.” States Dr. Hosun Hwang, a spine specialist at Houston Methodist.
When to know if your back pain has become chronic
Back pain tends to become chronic if the pain is persistent for three months or longer. In most cases, chronic back pain is related to your age, but it can also result from a new or previous injury, whether from sports, the workplace, etc. Back pain can also worsen if not treated properly or treated at all. Research suggests that between 60-75% of the population who experience back pain once will experience recurring or chronic problems. That is because most patients will not consult their physician for first-time problems, resulting in the patient continuing to experience chronic back problems. Contacting your local physician or physical therapist on the first onset of back pain is beneficial in finding answers to why you are experiencing your back pain and helps determine the next steps in your recovery process.
How can physical therapy help with chronic back pain?
Physical therapy can help restore the ability to conduct your daily routine without pain or discomfort. Large-scale studies have shown that physical therapy can provide up to 60% improvement in lower & chronic back pain.
Some of the most commonly seen back pain conditions seen by physical therapists include:
- Low Back Pain (LBP)
- Arthritis Pain
- Strains & Sprains
- Muscle Spasms
- Herniated Discs
- Degenerative Discs
- Piriformis Syndrome
- Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction
Physical therapy is the best non-surgical & non-invasive option for treating chronic back pain. Exercise plays a big part in physical therapy and is also the base foundation for chronic back pain treatment while being one of the first treatments you should consider under the supervision of your physician and physical therapist. However, the exercise must be specific to your problem. Talk with your physical therapist to conduct a treatment plan that is right for your pain and condition.
Physical therapy treatment for chronic back pain
Physical therapy treatments offer a comprehensive approach by incorporating manual therapy and prescriptive therapeutic exercise. Physical therapy programs strive to improve the patient’s physical condition and symptoms while providing them with movement awareness, knowledge of safe positions, functional strength, and coordination, all promoting chronic back pain management and healing.
Treatments offered may include:
- Comprehensive evaluations with an emphasis on finding the root of the problem
- Individualized & specific exercise programs to start the healing process
- Manual therapy (hands-on treatment)
- Progressive Home Exercise Programs to help restore independence and self-management
These treatments are tailored to the specific symptoms of your condition and diagnosis and are different for each patient. If you are experiencing back pain, you may benefit from an individualized consultation with a physical therapist. Find a PT near you today to get started on the road to recovery.