Lower Back Pain Treatment

We can help with: sciatica, back ache, back spasms, back muscle pain and provide back pain relief

We provide lower back pain treatment for a wide range of conditions including; sciatica, back ache, back spasms and back muscle pain.

Lower back pain, with or without sciatica, is a very common complaint which we help with daily at the practice.

The main culprits of low back pain are muscles, ligaments, and facet joints – the small joints on either side of the vertebrae which connect them to one another. Less frequently, the intervertebral discs are affected and can cause a range of symptoms.

Sciatica, which can be felt as shooting pain, numbness or tingling along the lower limb, can happen with or without low back pains. It signifies compression of the sciatic nerve, which can occur anywhere along its course from the lower back to the foot. Most frequently, the sciatic nerve is compressed by a facet joint or an intervertebral disc in the lower spine, or by the piriformis muscle in the middle of the buttock.

Meadowside Osteopathy - Farnham, Surrey - lower back pain treatment image

Our Approach

To find the root cause of the problem, we would first note all the details about how any symptoms came about, what it feels like, timing, daily pattern and aggravating or relieving factors.

We also ask about any issues with the rest of your spine and other joints, your health in general, and any significant events in the past such as accidents or surgery.

We then observe your back and assess movement in all directions, making note of any restrictions or pain. We may also perform special tests to assess the condition of the nerves, joints, muscles and ligaments.

Once we have established our working diagnosis we will explain to you what we found and let you know how we can help, and whether we need to make any referrals.

We then use specific massage, mobilisation, manipulation and stretching techniques to improve the flexibility in joints and muscles, relieve tension, improve freedom of movement and mechanics, and ensure good circulation for effective recovery.

Where appropriate, we also use sports taping to support the injured area as it heals and provide additional stability during the recovery phase.

During the session, we will also provide advice on exercise, posture and other techniques to aid fast recovery and maintain the treatment results.

 

Exercise and Advice

Here are some of the most common techniques and exercises we suggest for lower back pain:

 

Resting position

For acute back pain

Lie on your back on a supportive surface – floor, carpet or exercise mat.

Rest your legs up on a chair or sofa, so that the hips and knees are all at 90 degrees angles.

Relax in this position for up to 20 minutes at a time (no longer), with as little movement and effort as possible.

 

Knee hugs

Low back stretch

Lie on your back on a supportive surface, carpet or exercise mat are ideal.

Bring both knees up towards your chest, pull slowly and hold.

Tips: Try holding either over or under your knees, and choose whichever feels more comfortable.

Make sure your neck and shoulders are relaxed.

 

Single knee hugs

Gluteal muscles stretch

Lie on your back on a supportive surface, carpet or exercise mat are ideal.

Bring each knee up towards the opposite shoulder, pull slowly and hold.

Tips: Try holding either over or under your knee, choosing whichever feels more comfortable.

Make sure your neck and shoulders are relaxed.

 

Pigeon

Strong gluteal muscles stretch

Reclined Pigeon: Lie on your back on a supportive surface, with your knees bent and your feet on the floor / carpet.

Cross one ankle in front of the opposite knee, then bring that knee up towards your chest. Pull slowly and hold.

Seated Pigeon:

You can perform a very similar stretch whilst sitting, so it can be done almost anywhere and anytime.

Cross one ankle over the opposite knee, then lean forward with a straight back – so the movement is coming from your hips.

You should feel the stretch in the buttock on the side of the folded knee.

 

Child’s pose (Also known as prayer pose)

Middle and lower back stretch

Start on all fours (this might not be one for the office…)

Keeping your arms stretched ahead on the floor and sit back towards your heels.

To add side-bend: Rest one hand on top of the other, creating a stretch on one side, and sit back towards your heels again. To increase the stretch, move both hands further out to the side.

To add rotation: Thread one arm under the other, then follow it with the shoulder and neck, creating a twist through the spine.

 

Shoulder Retraction

Improving posture to protect the shoulders, neck and back

You can do this exercise anywhere, sitting or standing, while waiting for the train or at home while watching TV.

Start with your shoulders as relaxed as possible in a neutral position.

Then bring your shoulder blades back and down, as if to make them meet behind your back, or slip into your trousers’ back pockets.

Hold for only a second or two, then relax and start again. Repeat 10-20 times.

Tips: You can start by standing sideways in front of a mirror as you do it, and observe the dramatic change in your posture. As this exercise is designed to change the habitual ’round-shouldered’ or ‘slouchy’ posture, the more frequently it is done the better.

How does it work?

By bringing the shoulders back to their neutral place, beside our chest and not in front of it, we are improving the arms’ ability to move freely in all directions, thus reducing the potential for strains and injuries at the end of their range of movement.

This posture is also better for the back and neck, as it creates better alignment through the spine and reduces demand on its muscles.

 

Windmills

Improving freedom of movement through the upper body

Windmills are essentially the upright version of front-crawl and backstroke swimming.

Standing or walking, start with your shoulders relaxed, and swing your outstretched arms in turn to create circles beside you in the air.

Follow each arm with your gaze as they move, to engage the neck and upper back in the movement as well.

Repeat 10 times forward and 10 times back.

Modification:

If your shoulders won’t allow you to do this exercise comfortably, you can try bending at the elbows and creating circles with the elbows instead, or just rolling the shoulders with your arms relaxed beside you, still following the movement with your head and neck for maximum effect to the spine.