Browsing: Back Pain

6 Short And Effective Back Pain Relief Tips

Many individuals have problems with back pain each year. Do you think you're one of them?

Below are 6 back pain relief points for your information. You could try them out, and see if they meet your needs.

1 – Sleep on a Good Mattress

If you believe you're sleeping wrong, “or in case you are inflexible and even achy when you get up each morning, the issue is possibly musculoskeletal and relatively simple to cope with. You may help your body out by trying to adjust positions, thus taking strain off certain muscle groups. A bed mattress that's nor too fluffy nor too hard helps prevent your body from arching and sinking and preserves excellent post if if you find yourself lying down. Water pillows are excellent as you'll be able to let water out to get the perfect size. It is a myth that sleeping without a pillow is better for you – this may be quite as bad as sleeping with too many pillows.

2 – Watch Your Posture

Sitting in the identical position for a long time is the major culprit here – always try to get up to reduce tension right after working at a personal computer.

An upholstered chair that has a seat pillow which equally redirects your weight can help individuals who may have a herniated disc, piriformis syndrome (pain within the butt) together with different types of bursitis.

3 – Sleep Sideways

Sleeping on your side is more effective for your back since it yields less curvature in the spine. In the event you sleep on your back, place a cushion underneath your knees. Investigation shows that a reasonably firm bed mattress may typically provide greater level of comfort compared to a soft or quite firm bed mattress.

4 – Sleeping Behaviors

During the night or whenever you rest, sleep on your side with a pillow between your knees. In case your price range enables getting a completely new bed mattress, do not be afraid to “test drive” a couple of choices.

5 – Stress And Back Pain

Even though it is normally acknowledged that emotional stress and also mental factors could make just about any back pain problem more intense, the very idea of ​​”stress-related” back pain takes this concept one step further. It must be stressed that despite the fact that subconscious factors could be causing the physical signs and symptoms, the symptoms are certainly not fictional. Anxiety reduction activities can include pilates, meditation, biofeedback, tai chi, along with guided photographs.

6 – Top off on Specialized Cushions

The benefit of specific back cushions offered by pharmacies, catalogs along with numerous web sites online is usually that they help remind the sitter to pay attention to post in the thoracic spinal column by sitting up in a straight though comfortable position, they may serve you well at the gym as well. Gel cushions are usually good for piriformis syndrome and muscle spasm in the bottom; a person I saw the other day kept her with her 5 times per week through her time spent at the gym.

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Treating SI Joint Dysfunction in Children

Children with sharp, one-sided lower back pain that travels down the buttocks may be suffering from sacroiliac (SI) joint dysfunction. The condition is often caused by rigorous sports play in youth and is far more common in girls, given the general looseness of the developing female pelvic girdle.

The SI joints attach the large hip bones to the spine on each side. They typically allow for very little movement; SI joint dysfunction occurs when too much or too little movement is allowed. The repeated stresses of activities like dance or track and field, or impact injuries from sports like football or softball, can cause the joint to be either dislodged or locked in place.

SI joint dysfunction can be identified either by injecting a numb agent into the joint to see if it stops the pain or by an assessment in which the child performs certain movements and indications pain to an observing professional trained to identify SI joint dysfunction through movement patterns. This condition is increasingly thought to be a prevalent and overlooked cause of back pain in adults. It may also be prevalent among young people, whose bodies are still developing.

It may be frightening to imagine a child with a misaligned joint, but SI joint dysfunction may be very easily and safely treated among youth. One study thought to test the effectiveness of muscle energy technique in the realignment of the SI joint. Put simply, muscle energy technique involves the patient using his or her muscles to push against a counterforce. In the study, youth diagnosed with SI joint dysfunction did hip extension and flexion exercises while a physical therapist provided resistance. From a supine position, each patient first attempted to straighten their affected side's leg as the therapist resisted; this engaged the gluteus maximum muscle in the buttocks and folded back on the pelvis. If this did not realign the joint, the patients would attempt to re-bend the leg as the therapist resisted; this engaged the iliopsoas in the front of the hip and dropped the pelvis forward.

By using simple muscle engagement to change the position of the pelvis, 80% of the study's participants experienced significant relief of painful symptoms. 53% had complete, immediate resolution of pain. Average pain scale scores dropped nearly 4 points (within a 10-point scale) post-treatment. Of the 20% (9 patients) who did not experience relief, 2 had a spinal condition and 3 had histories of spinal surgeries. The full study can be viewed at .

Many of the youth in this study had been in pain for years. It is important to be aware of simple, natural treatments for pain like the muscle energy technique, which can get kids back into the activities that they love without the concerns of pain medication or surgery.

Treating sacroiliac joint dysfunction in children and young adults may be as simple as a trip to the physical therapist. Help your children grow up healthy by being aware of different back pain conditions affecting youth.

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Prevent Back Pain From Raking

In many places, fall weather means falling leaves. As you break out your rake for the impending autumn yard work, keeping a few tips in mind will help you reserve your back.

Raking is predominately considered a chore, but it's also a workout. You work the large muscles in your arms and legs as you move across the yard, pulling leaves toward you and loading them into lawn bags. This gives you both muscular and cardiovascular exercise. Approaching this task as an exercise rather than a chore will help you avoid back pain by focusing on form and body mechanics.

The following steps should be taken before, during and after your raking workout:

1. Warm up.
While not an Olympic sport, raking requires sufficient muscle use and joint range of motion to validate a good stretch beforehand. Before activity, it is better to do dynamic stretches (involving movement) than static stretches (done while holding still); dynamic stretching better prepares the muscles and joints for action. Side bends with arms in the air, upper body rotations and standing knee-to-chest stretches are good warm-ups for the back, arms, legs and core. If you have a large yard to rake, consider taking a 5-10 minute walk to increase blood flow first.

2. Use the right tool. :
Your rake should fit your body. If the shaft is too short, you will end up hunched over. Make sure you can grip the shaft comfortably from an upright position. Ergonomic rakes are on the market that feature a D-grip style handle partway down the rake's shaft; this allows for increased leverage and less movement while raking.

3. Limit twisting.
When most people rake, they're sorry to twist their bodies to reach the leaves around them. One small movement repeated many times can lead to pain; when it comes to twisting, lower back pain is a common result of such repetition. Moving to the leaves will allow some of the burdens to be placed on the legs rather than the back.

4. Bend properly.
Two adages are relevant here: Bend at the hips, not at the waist; Lift with the legs, not with the back. When you reach for leaves with the rake, you want to bend as little as possible. What bending you do should occur at the hips while the spine remains neutral. Think of your hips as a hinge between your upper and lower body. When bending down to pick leaf piles up, bend your knees to get you down low and use the power of your legs to lift.

5. Slow down.
While an activity that doubles as a chore and an exercise might not be the most appealing, it's important not to rush through raking. Rushing renders you unacceptable to improper body mechanics. Try to find things to help you slow down. Save raking for when you have plenty of time. Take a 10-15 minute break for every hour you're raking. Put some music on. Find a way to make this activity leisurely.

6. Cool down.
Now it's time for those static stretches. Check out the slideshow at for some basic static stretches you can do once the yard is all clear. This will allow muscles to pump out waste products of work and draw in fresh blood.

Improper body mechanics will haunt your back through all your activities. Start fall off right by preventing lower back pain while raking.

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What You Should Know If You Have Neck or Back Pain

Back and neck pain are two of the most common health complaints affecting people around the world. Recent investigations into back and neck pain let us know the following facts.

1. People usually begin to feel pain in their 20's, but sadly, up to 50% of children also complain of neck or back pain.

2. Up to 30% of people have back or neck pain at any given moment.

3. Up to 80% of all people develop neck or back pain in their lifetime.

4. Most untreated neck and back problems will get worse, often leading to spinal arthritis. “In Australia, arthritis is the most common cause of substantial and severe handicap, with many sufferers requiring help with their activities of daily life” – Arthritis Foundation of Australia.

5. The treatment of neck and back pain is one of the greatest and most inefficient expenditure of health care resources today.

Neck and back pain is such a huge problem that governments from all around the world, in an attempt to help solve this problem, have sponsored leading researchers to find the fastest and most effective treatments for back and neck pain.

The major investigations have been done by the USA, UK and Canadian governments, their aim was to find out the most common causes of neck and back pain and to identify what the best treatment for those problems are. Here is what was found.

1. That there are 3 general types of spinal problems that cause back and neck pain.

(i) Mechanical problems.

(ii) Nerve root pain.

(iii) Serious pathology.

(i) Mechanical: these are problems with the joints, muscles, disks and ligaments of the spell. Here are some of the common types of mechanical problems muscle strains, ligament sprains, increased muscle tension, spinal joint misalignment, abnormal spinal curvatures, disc problems (disc bulges, disc herniation, or “wearing out”), arthritis (spinal degeneration).

Some common signs and symptoms of mechanical problems areaching pains, sharp pains, increased muscle tension and tightness, poor posture, pain usually gets worse with activity, pain is somewhat relieved with rest, the pain can restrict your normal movements.

Mechanical problems have been reported to be the cause of up to 90% of neck and back pain. Most neck and back pain sufferers have a mechanical cause to their pain, and usually they'll have more than on type of problem eg someone with back pain may have muscle tension, spinal misalignments and some arthritis.

In fact, the longer someone has an uncorrected problem the additional problems that they will develop eg someone develops a spinal misalignment, which causes an increase in muscle tension and some abnormal spinal curvatures, then if these problems are left uncorrected, over time, they can cause some wearing out (thinning) of disks and lead to the early development of spinal arthritis.

(ii) Nerve root pain: This is usually due to leaving mechanical problems uncorrected … The pain felt with these problems is characteristically a very sharp, intense “shooting” pain into the arms or legs (eg Sciatica), it is caused by pressure on or irritation of, the spinal nerves. The pressure on the nerves is usually from bulging disks or spinal arthritis (both usually due to unexported mechanical problems). Nerve root pain causes about 10% of neck and back pain.

(iii) Serious pathology: This includes fractures, infections, tumors and others. These causes are, fortunately, quite rare causing less than 1% of back and neck pain.

So, the majority of back and neck pain is caused by mechanical problems and the complications of uncorrected mechanical problems (nerve root pain).

These mechanical spinal problems are usually caused by bad postures, repetitive strain injuries, or by trauma. Risk factors for developing mechanical spinal problems are bad post, bad lifting habits, stressful living and working conditions, a loss of spinal strength and flexibility, a loss of general physical fitness.

USA, UK and Canada government research found the best treatment for most neck and back pain was Chiropractic care. Chiropractic was often found to be the most effective, the safest, the most cost effective, the most successful in the long term and had some of the highest patient satisfaction levels.

The results from scientific studies, from all around the world, done to find the best treatments for neck and back pain:

The “Magna Report,” 1993, this study was done by the government of Ontario, Canada in an attempt to find the most effective for low back pain sufferers, here's what they found.

(i) Chiropractic care was shown to be the most effective treatment for low back pain.

(ii) Chiropractic care was the safest treatment for low back pain.

(iii) That spinal manipulation was best (and most safely) performed by Chiropractors.

(iv) That patients were “very satisfied” with Chiropractic care.

(v) Recommendations for Chiropractic to be fully integrated into the hospital system.

The British Medical Research trial, 1990-1995, this research examined the effectiveness of Chiropractic care compared to the effectiveness of a combination of medical and physiotherapy treatment. This research showed that Chiropractic care produced excellent short and long term results for patients with both acute and chronic pain; and patients with moderate and severe pain. This research showed the superior effectiveness and cost effectiveness of Chiropractic care. The results of this research were endorsed by the British Medical Association.

The “Agency for Health Care Policy and Research,” 1994, a 23 member multidisciplinary (all types of health care professionals) expert panel set up and run by the US government recommended spinal manipulation as an appropriate first line approach to the treatment of most people with acute low back pain.

The “Clinical Standards Advisory Group,” 1994, a 10 member multidisciplinary expert panel set up and run by the UK government found as above that Chiropractic treatment is an appropriate first line approach to the treatment of back pain.

The “Royal college of General Practitioners,” 1996, recommended spinal manipulation as an appropriate first line approach to the treatment of back pain.

Dr William H Kirkaldy – Willis, Orthopedic surgeon, Professor Orthopedic surgery, Royal University Hospital, Saskatoon, Canada, reported after his 40 years of experience and research, that many spinal pain sufferers are greatly benefited from Chiropractic treatment, in fact, in one study he preformed approximately “90% of patients returned to full function with no restrictions for work and other activities,” after Chiropractic treatment.

All across the world, experts are recommend Chiropractic care for people with neck and back pain. If you want to find out if Chiropractic can help your neck or back pain contact your local Chiropractor.

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Why Your MD May NOT Be the Best Choice for Your Back Pain

From time to time I will get on Facebook and notice that a friend has some sort of back pain and they are wondering what they should do. This morning I saw this one:

“So I have this sharp pain in my lower back and left hip that knocks me down if I do not handle it right. My face is developing permanent grimace lines. I do not have to go to a chiropractor, do I? ”

The comments section will fill with the advice of well-meaning friends. Ice it then heat it. Heat it then ice it. Go see a chiropractor. Go see an acupuncturist. Do not see and acupuncturist or a chiropractor. Come to my Yoga class. You need surgery. You have sciatica. Physical therapy is the answer.

It's almost as if the flurry of advice compounds the problem instead of making it better. Like I said before … well-meaning friends … but what is somebody to do when they are faced with all of these options? Well I really just want to comment on the piece of advice that irks me the most which is probably one of the least productive things you can do. That is: Go to your MD. They can decide if this is something minor that can be handled by a chiropractor or if it is serious and needs surgery.

People who give this advice operate under the false assumption that MDs have a lot of training in diagnosing or treating back pain. The truth is that there is very little training on musculoskeletal (that is muscle and joint) conditions in medical school. Without an MD receives specific orthopedic or sports medicine training then their training is very basic. When I receive a referral from a medical doctor or review chart notes by an MD treating a low back pain case the most common diagnosis that use is code 724.2 which is the code for “Low Back Pain”. Yes that's right. You go to the MD and tell them you have low back pain and they diagnose you with … low back pain. Usually this only costs you a couple hundred bucks. There are dozens of more specific ways to diagnose back pain but MDs typically do not have the training to identify the different types.

Shocked? I'm not just picking on MDs. They know this themselves. A 1999 survey of the Steering Committee on Collaboration among Physician Providers Involved in Musculoskeletal Care revealed that the percentages MDs who felt ideally prepared to physically assess problems of low back pain was 31%. See what I'm saying? The problem is that most MDs would never let you know that they did not feel confident about treating your back pain. They are trained in school to appear confident regardless of the challenge. As a result we expect them to have all of the answers when we have a problem. You can see though that less than 1/3 of them do.

As a result they tend to offer the riskiest and least effective treatment methods with comparison to what they have labeled “Complementary and Alternative” methods. Narcotics are routinally prescribed to cover low back pain symptoms without thought or attempt to ascertain the actual cause of the problem. Some patients risk drug interactions, adverse reactions and even addiction. Over-the-counter drugs also pose significant risks as NSAIDs like ibuprofen, aleve, and advil which kill about 16,000 people every year. MDs also frequently order unnecessary and expensive tests such as MRI for simple problems. Meanwhile much safer and more effective therapies such as Chiropractic or Osteopathic Manipulation are considered a second tier option by MDs for treating back pain? It is time to switch our thinking about the role of these therapies when it comes to musculoskeletal conditions. Or more to the point, drugs and surgery need to be considered the alternative treatment methods.

As a Doctor of Chiropractic my primary training is in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. To become a chiropractor requires thousands of hours in the study, diagnosis and treatment of these problems. In all my years of practice I have never diagnosed a low back condition as 724.2 – Low Back Pain. Let's be honest. You can diagnose yourself with that for free. Because of my training I know when to order an X-Ray, MRI or refer for surgery. I know the difference between a simple strain, a disc injury or even evidence that the problem could even be cancer. My treatments carry a very low level of risk and chiropractic is consistently rated as the treatment method with the highest level of patient satisfaction for low back pain. When you have back pain you want an expert. Typically, that is not your MD. Do not get me wrong … MDs are great at many things but for low back pain you have much better options.

So in the future, if you want to help a friend you can post a comment. You'll be doing them a favor!

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Getting Help for Low Back Pain

Low back pain is something that afflicts millions of people, to include children and teenagers, as well as adults. When it comes to this type of pain, there are a number of challenges. For one thing, back pain can be caused by many different things and on reach several levels of intensity. In addition, the back is used to perform multiple daily tasks such as bending, twisting, lifting, coughing, sneezing, and much more.

To treat all the different problems that involve the lower back, an individual has multiple possibilities for treatment. However, the only way to get relief from pain and address the underlying cause is with a firm diagnosis but to avoid aggregating the problem, it would be essential to undergo the right treatment.

Along with treatment, there are things an individual could do to prevent injury and reduce risk of developing certain health conditions. We wanted to take the opportunity to address some of the causes of low back pain but also safe and effective treatment options available today.

Onset of Back Pain

Although pain can develop in virtually any part of the body, it is most common in the lower region of the back because of an intricate structure that consist of tendons, muscles, soft tissue, and extremely sensitive nerves and nerve roots. The lower back is also composed of both small and complex joints, along with spinal discs filled with a gel-like fluid.

If at any time one or more of these components becomes irritated or damaged, pain would ensue. Of course, the type and level of pain would depend on the part of the structure involved but also the exact cause, which would dictate the proper treatment. Pain can develop from strain associated with overuse, as well as twisting, bending, or lifting incorrectly. However, pain can also be the result of a car accident, bad fall, or some other trauma.

Some of the underlying health issues that lead to lower back pain include the following:

  • Degenerative Disc Disease
  • Herniated Disc
  • Lumbar Radiculopathy
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction
  • Sciatica
  • Spinal Stenosis
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Subluxation

In addition to the above, there are certain risk factors for back pain. For instance, age, obesity, and poor posture would increase risk of experiencing pain and but also decrease mobility. By making healthy lifestyle choices and going through special exercises, a person can often overcome pain without any assistance but for persistent or worsening pain, it would be essential to get proper treatment.

We also wanted to point out that if any of the following symptoms were to accompany pain, immediate medical attention would be warranted.

  • Medium to high fever
  • Chills
  • Significant weight loss
  • Leg weakness
  • Incontinence
  • Severe abdominal pain

Appropriate Treatment Options

As mentioned, the exact treatment would depend largely on actual cause or health risk involved although there are many problems that can be prevented. While conventional medicine is one option, chiropractic care should also be considered for many back issues.

When taking a more conventional approach, medication to reduce both pain and inflammation would be prescribed. In addition, physical therapy, cognitive / behavioral therapy, and biofeedback are often used. Now, for more serious conditions, the solution could involve a minor surgical procedure or full-blown surgery.

As an alternative, chiropractic care comes highly recommended. According to the latest statistics, approximately 22 million people in the United States see a chiropractor to achieve pain relief. Chiropractic care takes two very distinct approaches to include regular visits as a means of preventing back trouble and going through specialized treatments to produce relief form pain and inflammation.

Using hands-on spinal adjusting alone or coupled with other treatments as part of chiropractic care, the body's musculoskeletal structure can be perfectly aligned. With the column column and components in proper balance, the body has the ability to heal on its own. However, spinal adjustment is also used to restore mobility and function. On a final note, there are patients with low back pain that get the best results from a combination of chiropractic care and conventional medicine.

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Shoulder Blade Pain Causes

Pain is a very unpleasant experience whenever it's acute, chronic or both. It is the body's way of communicating to us that something is not quite right and needs attention.

Fortunately for us the body has the most amazing capabilities and usually will heal itself. This is especially true when we are young, fit and mobile.

Shoulder blade pain is like any other type of pain in that it hurts and quite often will cause a reduction in the capacity to move the shoulder. It is always wise to seek medical attention if your pain remains the same or does not improve with 'over the counter' medication after a few days.

The most likely health care providers to help assess the cause of the pain is a General Practitioner (Doctor), Osteopath or Chiro-practor. They will use a their own clinical judgment and quite possibly the help of Xray, Ultrasound or MRI to find the cause.

The shoulder blade is triangular in shape and commonly known as the scapula. It is supported by a network or muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves. The shoulder blade is positioned on the upper right and left side of the back, with the spine running down the middle.

Shoulder blade pain may be caused by damage through a movement or activity to any of the tendons, ligaments or muscles that support it. Sometimes it can be associated by a trapped nerve caused by a disc pressing down on the nerve.

Types of pain

Pain itself is subjective and whilst one individual may experience a high degree of pain for a certain injury, another may be able to tolerate more pain. The different types of pain can sometimes help define the nature of the injury. Throbbing, burning, cramping, tightness, stabbing are just some of the types of pain described. You may experience more than one type of pain.

Shoulder blade pain can be associated with myocardial infarction, commonly known as a 'heart attack' Symptoms that would need following up immediately would be:

Chest tightness

Central chest pain

Pain radiating to the left arm and / or left jaw

Central crushing pain, sometimes described as having a tight band around your chest

New pain, similar to indigestion

Chest pain or breathlessness on exertion.

You should call the emergency services if you experience any of these types of pain. If you are not sure you should still call the emergency services or speak to your Doctor straight away.

Shoulder Blade Pain Causes;

There are many things that can cause shoulder blade pain. The more common types of pain are caused by injury to the soft tissues surrounding the shoulder blade.
Arthritis of the spine may cause a disc between the vertebrae of the spine to protrude and press on a nerve.

Fracture to the shoulder blade through trauma.

Bursitis – The soft cushion between the joint and muscle can become stiff and swollen.

Rotator cuff – Tendons supporting the shoulder get damaged through injury or repeated use.

Shoulder AC separation – ligaments connecting the collar bone and shoulder blade are stretched or torn, causing pain.

Tendonitis – Pain is experienced when the tendons become inflamed and swollen.

Basic recovery tips:

1) Bruising and most strains may be treated with ice or heat pads and some over the counter pain relief. Restricting movement until the area has cured may also help considerably.

2) An exercise period may help to speed up the recovery process, however it is best to seek avoid professional advice to avoid any further damage.

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Do You Suffer From Back Pain When Sitting?

Through the ages, bad workmen have been blaming their tools. Now they're blaming their chairs.

I heard of one organization where as soon as people slap a claim form for lower back pain on their manager's desk, they get given a $ 1,200 chair. It's a government organization so there's plenty of money for chairs.

This is an organization where a lot of the staff are not in great physical condition, but that's not unusual for people with back, neck, shoulder and wrist pain.

From my experience it's drawing a long bow to blame the chair if you can not do 20 situps, 20 pressups and 20 squats in 30 seconds.

Plus it's not fair to blame the chair if your hamstring and buttock muscles are so tight you can not sit up straight. And yet what is the first thing people do when they have back pain? They blame the chair and put in a request for a new one without doing anything to improve their own physical condition.

I can tell you one thing, the problem is rarely the chair, it's the person sitting in it and if you want a cushy job sitting down all day, you'd better start training.

As I write I'm sitting comfortably on a $ 45 chair. It's the simplest of old fashioned typist's chairs. The chair does not have any arms, the back is upright, it's the right height for my work station and my abdomen is pressed in to the desk. There's a hollow in my lower back. I'm up straight and locked in.

Regardless of the cost of your chair, if you sit down for most of the day and you do not have a decent strength and flexibility training program, sooner or later you're bound to be on the receiving end of back pain. Chances are you'll also have an upper back, shoulder, neck and wrist pain.

Despite the fact that you're always going off to a therapist – no-one has ever told you that back pain is not due to a lack of rubbing, crunching, heating or vibrating. Nor is it due to a lack of ibuprofen, codeine, paracetamol, oxycodone or laudanum!

If OH & S staff were on the job they'd have vigilante squads going around workplaces making sure people had their desks and chairs set up properly and were sitting up straight, with their abdomens pressing into the desk and the back of the chair pressing in up under their shoulder blades. No workplace can afford to tolerate people sitting in any other position. If there is not a hollow in their lower back people are not sitting correctly. New chair, bah humbug!

I have not come across any OH & S staff who regularly measure the strength and flexibility of people with back, shoulder, neck and wrist pain. They too subscribe to the theory that the chair is to blame.

In fact it's got to the stage where OH & S officers reiterate to make these assessments for fear of being taken to the cleaners for human rights abuse. Generally speaking, human responsibilities take a back seat to human rights.

I've been told by OH & S officers that strength and flexibility assessments discriminate against people who are out of condition. I point out to them that as long as the organization is paying their workers compensation insurance premium they have every right to manage the risk.

It appears to be beyond reason to go up to someone and say, 'Mate, there's a high likelihood that the reason you have lower back pain is because you're not in great shape. Instead of a $ 1,200 chair, I'm going to pay the first two months of a gym membership for you so you can get your body back in better alignment. I'll even pay for half a dozen sessions with a personal trainer. '

The other bit of research that dare not speak its name is that the closer you approach the point of being 20Kg or more over weight, the higher the likelihood of succumbing to lower back pain.

You can imagine how well telling someone to lose weight is going to go down in the workplace and yet the research findings are compelling. The fatter you are the higher the risk of lower back pain.

Of course if you do not measure the risk you can not manage the risk and in the majority of corporations, the risk of musculo-skeletal dysfunction is either measured nor managed.

Workers compensation promotions are going through the roof, not from work-related injuries but from personally-generated musculo-skeletal dysfunctions being treated as work-related injuries.

Surprisingly the workers compensation insurers have not twigged to the abuse of the workers' compensation system; they're under doctors' orders. But it just so happens that for most people, lower back pain is not a medical condition, it's a fitness problem and fitness is not the medical industry's strongest suit. But the fact is, you can not solve a fitness problem with a medical solution.

Some of the government compensation funds are drowning in a sea of ​​unfunded liability. Every man, woman and their dog is hell bent on getting a $ 250,000 payout, as if that will miraculously restore poor function to good and the pain go away.

Maybe it does. Louise Hay in her book, 'You Can Heal your Life' writes that the esoteric interpretation of lower back pain is fear and worry about money. '

In the meantime just buy a new chair and be done with it.

John Miller

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How to Banish Your Back Pain For Good

Back pain management is certainly that needs to be considered rather seriously, especially if you do desire some form of relief. What needs to be understood first and foremost is what the exact problem is. This would certainly help you gauge what needs to be done when it comes to back pain management. As many of you would know, there are quite a number of reasons why you could be suffering from pain. Some of the many reasons could be due to insufficient muscle strength, bad posture, being obese or even overweight, shortened muscles, poor lifting techniques and bending.

The best way you can manage your pain is by simply educating yourself. All you really need to do is to find out what the exact problem is and then to take remedial action. If you are in constant pain, it is best that you seek medical attention. Having said that make sure you understand the functioning of your back muscles. When you strengthen your back muscles you will note that the pain does dissipate. More often than not what you do need is exercise and a good diet. Losing weight and strengthening your core back muscles is all part and parcel of pain management.

If your back pain is present right through for over three months, then this is considered as being chronic. What you need to be careful of is wherever or not you are suffering from a herniated disc. This can, in essence, lead to more complications if you do not seek treatment. More bad news is the fact that a simple muscle strain can, in fact, lead to more intestinal pain than a herniated disc. Back pain management in this instance is to seek medical attention.

As you do get older, the strength of your muscles will decrease. You will not be able to take up strenuous tasks that involve lifting and carrying. This is why you need to start with back pain management from an initial stage. Do not ignore any pain, however small it is. Do proper warm up exercises and intense stretching before you even think of doing something strenuous. Moreover, it needs to be said that a condition known as Osteoarthritis is something that affects people over 65. Being more careful with yourself as you age will help you consider pain management so that you do not become a victim to it for the long term.

Finally, it needs to be stated that conditions such as sciatica and issues with your kidneys could lead to any sort of pain. This is why you must never take back pain too lightly. Being more conscious of your body and considering just a few hassle-free tips on will ensure that you are pain free.

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Some Mobility Products That Could Help You Cope Better With Daily Back Pain

There are many things that could help sufferers cope with back pain and back problems in their daily lives, but many people are often unaware of just what kind of help and equipment is on hand to alleviate issues with pain. Here is a brief guide where we will take a look at just some of the products you are likely to find which have been designed to aid a person's quality of life when dealing with long-term back pain.

Over the recent years, technology and science have mage huge advances when it comes to the design and development of back relief and mobility products. As a result, if you were thinking they would be too expensive to have in you home, think again as, in many cases, there are products to suit most people's budget.

Probably one of the most popular and significant mobility products for people who are suffering with back pain in their daily life is the modern 'rise and recliner chairs' available on the market. Daily use of a rise and recliner chair will be able to assist a person who suffers from almost any form of back pain. Just being able to get support and a helping lift as you leave your chair can make all the difference.

The next mobility product well-worth considering for your home when you or a loved one sufferers from back pain or mobility issues is an electric adjustable bed. Modern electrically adjustable adjustable beds are now very comfortable and offer welcome relief when settling into bed for bedtime or when rising from the bed, or simply to get into a comfortable position when trying to sleep.

As with rise and recline chairs, most modern beds are very affordable and can now even be manufactured to suit your personal taste in desirable fabrics or materials so they can blend in with the décor and surrounding inside your home.

It is also worth mentioning that, because people have different body sizing body weights, that most specialist manufacturers will offer not only a bespoke finish for your chosen mobility product, but also a made to measure service, meaning that you will get a product which suits not only your home but your body.

These are just two of the many products currently available from specialist mobility companies, so why do not have a look to see if there are some products which can make a difference in your life with back pain?

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6 Key Concepts for Your Core Training Workouts

Discover the importance of utilizing all the muscles of your core to improve the effectiveness of your core training workouts and help reduce back pain by targeting these 6 key concepts (and muscle groups) during your workouts.

Maximize the benefits of your core training workouts to support good functional movement habits and improve strength and stability for optimal whole-body health.

1. Strengthen the Diaphragm with Better Breathing to Improve Both Standing and Seated Posture

Learn to strengthen and improve the action of the Diaphragm. Great breathing habits help improve our posture and provide compression and decompression for the spine. This helps lift the ribs up off the hips to create space so the Core muscles have more room to move. Good Pilates posterior-lateral breathing techniques can help assist in re-training the lungs and diaphragm to better support the Core.

2. Find and Engage the “Floor” of the Core ( Pelvic Floor Support)

Using proper Pelvic Floor support is a CRITICAL component to effective Core Training! Doing a Kegel will NOT help you use the right muscle for pelvic and spinal stability for Core training during exercise & movement. The Pelvic Floor is our foundation for torso support. Using the pelvic floor muscles is what allows the breath to lift and ligthen the spine. You can visualize the Pelvic Floor as having 4 walls. 2 side walls & a front & back. Different muscles are involved to contract and support the front-to-back of the Pelvic Floor vs. the Sides of the Pelvic Floor. These muscles should be able to engage all together, and independently to assist and support the body when we move.

3. Strengthen the Internal & External Obliques with Twisting Exercises to Improve Movement & Stabilization of the Spine

It's the strength of our Internal and External Oblique muscles that defines the distance between our ribcage and our hip bones to provide Core stability and support. When the Internal and External Obliques contract in the front of the body, the spine rotates. (AND there are back muscles that also have to fire and assist with this rotary movement.)

The strength and support of our Oblique Muscles assist our Core training efforts in two different ways.

  • If doing an exercise like Criss-Cross in a Pilates Mat Class, the Obliques and Back muscles work together to rotate the spell and twist the torso.
  • If doing an exercise like the One Leg Circle, the Obliques and opposing Back muscles now become stabilizers of the spine and pelvis to allow free movement of the leg.

4. Engage the Transverse Abdominals for Support in the Front of the Pelvis, Sacrum, and Lumbar Spine

The Transverse Abdominals help hold the organs inside our body cavity, and provide support in the front of the spine and pelvis. The lift of these muscles helps to lift the pelvis up off our legs to allow free movement of the leg from the hip. As well as a free hinge of the body forward and back around the legs. (A lot of people attempt to find this lift by “gripping” with their Quads & Hip Flexors – instead of using much (if any) Transverse support.)

Here's a helpful hint to help you find and use the Transverse Abdominals: If you lift your lower Abs up and in, and the pelvis tucks – you've used the Rectus muscle to contract and shorten, rather than your Transverse to support. Keep your hips and pelvis still and think about lifting up with your lower abdominals from approximately 2 inches below your belly button. Pull up, in, and back with these muscles towards the bottom back ribs. (without changing the position of the pelvis – tucking or arching) It's almost like your low abs are smiling. When you find this muscle contracting, you are using your Transverse Abdominal muscles to do the work.

This “low Ab smile” can be practiced with standing and laid posture, and is a part of the support needed for a good Pilates C-Curve – but it's not the initiator to scoop the pelvis into a posterior-tilted position.

5. Back Strengthening – Using the Muscles for Spine Extension and Movement (Erector Spinae muscles)

While the Transverse and Oblique Abdominals help keep us lifted up through the front of the body, in the back we need to be using the Spine Extensors and Multifidus for support. Our Spine Extensors are the muscles that MOVE the back into extension.

To maintain tall, lifted posture Erector Spinae muscles need to be working to help keep gravity from winning when we sit and stand. Typically, the neck extensors and low back are strong, and the Erector Spinae muscles through the middle and upper back are weak. Learning to balance the work of the Spine Extensors through the ENTIRE spinal can help ensure balanced muscle development, improved core support, and helps to facilitate efficient functional movement.

* Note: Military Posture – “pinching the blades together to pull your shoulders back and stick your chest out” is not helping to strengthen the weaker middle / upper back spine extensors, but instead is overworking the Rhomboids, and reinforcing poor shoulder mechanics which long -term can result in serious shoulder injuries . When you pinch the shoulder blades together, the shoulders are doing all the moving and the spine will be held in a stabile position (but not supported from the right spot!

6. Improving Back Stability and Support – Multifidus Muscles

Along the back, our Spine Extensors are the mobility muscles and the Multifidus are stability muscles. The Multifidus muscles span the full length of the spinal in a chevron pattern to link multiple segments of the spine together for back stability. When you do an exercise like Plank, or a Push-Up, to help keep the back from sagging it involves a tremendous amount of core support. Part of the support to stay lifted coming from the Abs, the Spine Extensors work to maintain length, and it's the Multifidus muscles working for stability that help keep the back from sagging.

  • Exercises that involve MOVEMENT of the spine will not involve the Multifidus.
  • All positions that involve STABILITY of the spine and the Multifidus muscles are an important part of helping to maintain great Core support.

Whether the back is held in a neutral position like a Plank, a held still in a C-Curve position for Pilates Matwork exercises like Rolling Like a Ball, or held in extension for the Advanced Mat exercise the Swan Dive, if the goal is to hold the spinal in a stabilized position, the Multifidus muscles have to be activated to hold the position.

Evaluate the exercises in your core training workouts. Are you doing exercises that target, (or have you thinking, finding, and feeling) each of these important concepts and muscle groups to strengthen your core?

By incorporating exercises that train and target all six of these very important core training concepts into your workouts, you can be sure that you are really making a difference to strengthen and improve Core stability for balanced muscle development, efficient functional movement, and improved health.

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A Brief Guide to Home Products Which Will Assist in the Lives of Back Pain Suffers

Today, many people will have either been affected by some kind of back pain or they will know someone, possibly a family member, who suffers from back pain or mobility issues. Help is at hand if you are unfortunate enough to be a sufferer of back pain or mobility problems, as there are now many specialist companies which offer products which will assist in daily life.

Here is a simple and brief guide to give you some ideas and basic information about the kinds of mobility products available from companies specializing in products that are specifically designed for people who have mobility problems or are long-term sufferers of back pain.

For some people, it is something as simple as memory foam cushions located on a standard lounge chair which will assist by raising the seating position, meaning it will be easier to be able to get into a standing position than being imprisoned, but for the best posture and easing back pain when rising from a seated position, you'll want a rise and recliner chair.

Currently, many companies offer a range of rise and recliner chairs in a variety of styles, finishes and covers, meaning you will be able to find something which fits into your home and is in keeping with the rest of your furnishings. The benefits of a specialist rise and recliner chair are significant, as they will not only lend your back pain when rising or settling into your chair, but also offer a degree of adjustment when you are left too.

Why not consider an adjustable bed too? Most of us spend so much of our time sleep or resting that the addition of an adjustable bed to someone's life that has mobility issues or sufferers from long-term back pain could see a remarkable difference to the quality of life they enjoy. Adjustable beds are electrically powered and offer easy adjustment when laying in a sleeping position and can assist when either entering bed or when rising in the morning.

If or a loved one suffers from back pain as a result of an accident or an injury, or even possibly a severe illness like cancer which can cause mobility issues, it could be time to look at the range of mobility products currently available. It's worth noting that these kinds of mobility products can also help or be of assistance to people who suffer with many other physical issues in their lives. These can include poor body circulation, water retention, breathing difficulties and deep vein thrombosis.

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Back Pain Symptoms – First Look For The Underlying Cause Of The Problem

Back pain is a symptom of a body that's out of alignment. It's a symptom that weak and tight muscles somewhere in your body have allowed those bones to move out of alignment.

The pain is telling people to do something to get the bones in their lower back into better alignment.

What most people are not aware of is the principle that says, 'The cause of the pain is rarely at the site where it's painful.'

Their therapist probably has not heard of this principle either. You'll know this is the case if the therapist starts heating, rubbing, crunching or vibrating the spot where it hurts.

So if back pain is a symptom of a body that's out of alignment what is it that's caused the bones of the lower back to move out of alignment?

It's usually tight muscles attached you your pelvis – front, back and sides. If they're tight they'll pull the pelvis down and back and cause it to twist. If that's the case people will not be able to sit up straight with a nice hollow in their lumber spell.

When the pelvis moves out of alignment, the bones up above also move out of alignment. The natural 'S' shaped curve of the spine will have turned into a 'C' shape.

The usual cause of this happening is sitting down all day in the 'slump dog' position and not having a flexibility training program to loosen off the calf, hamstring and buttock muscles.

Flexibility is the first problem.

The second contributing factor is a lack of overall body strength. How can you expect the bones of your back to stay in alignment if the muscles supporting those bones are weak? Well you can not.

I recently had a bloke come to see me with lower back pain. He'd done the rounds and spent thousands of dollars on therapists who thought the cause of his problem was in his lower back. They did not understand that his lower back pain symptoms were caused by weak and tight muscles attached to his pelvis.

No-none had checked to see which muscles were tight and no-one had checked to see how strong he was.

He could hardly do a situp. He could hardly do a pressup. He'd never done a Superman back arch or a squat. He did not have a training training program at the gym.

It beggars belief that no-one had made an effort to search for the undering cause of his pain. Maybe it's too simple to ask people to see if they can sit up straight in a few simple yoga-type postures or watch to see if they can do the most popular strength exercises.

It just reinforces my belief that it's a waste of time going to see anyone who does not tell you the likely cause of your problem and / or does not give you a good suite of strength and flexibility exercises to restore poor function to good. Just treat any therapy as complementary health care. The primary health care for joint and muscle pain is the strength and flexibility exercises you do yourself.

In a nutshell the symptoms of back pain are weak and tight muscles somewhere in your body. Often it's tight and weak muscles right through your body.

In the meantime stay tuned greatly tuned and embark on a regular and systematic strength and flexibility training program. Any therapy on top of that will speed up the rehab process.

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MELT: Natural Movement Therapy For Back Pain

As knowledge concerning the human body and its many interconnected systems increases, new forms of pain treatment develop. On a regular basis, new methods of back pain treatment emerge that encompass the evolving understanding scientists, researchers and students of rehabilitative science have of the body. The number of these treatment options usually comes as a surprise – and a relief – to people struggling with chronic pain who've found themselves at a dead end on the conventional treatment path.

Movement and manipulation therapies have proven very effective in relieving many back pain causes, from chronic muscle tension to misaligned joints. Some of these treatments are fairly straightforward: in exercise therapy, you strengthen muscles that support the spinal; myofascial release targets knots in muscle and connective tissue and restores elasticity. There are some treatments that invoke a more multidisciplinary approach; these may do a better job of addressing the whole body rather than specific problem areas. One such treatment method is called MELT.

Sue Hitzmann is a Craniosacral and Neuromuscular Therapist which multidisciplinary approach led her to develop the MELT system. It integrates her learning in neuromuscular communication and fascia, the connective tissue that surrounds and supports all of the body's structures. Hitzmann's goal is to rehydrate connective tissue, theby increasing effective neuromuscular communication through functional fascia and keeping the body stronger overall.

The MELT method employs a number of principles and devices from other treatments, including foam rollers, an emphasis on body awareness and conscious muscle engagement. Unlike self-myofascial release, MELT does not advocate the use of heavy compression of fascia; the roller used is very soft. A MELT session has four purposes: to reconnect (increase mind-body connection through body awareness), to rebalance (the diaphragm and the core / nerve communication system), to rehydrate (connective tissue) and to release (by decompressing the body's joints) . See for a video of a MELT session for the lower back.

MELT is a whole-body approach to maintaining health and recovering from injury. This has certain benefits; a mechanical problem in one part of the body is often related to a problem in a different part. Also worth noting is that MELT seeks to train the body's neurocommunication system to send the right messages to muscles at the right time, thereby helping prevent further injury.

As a gentle, whole-body treatment system, MELT may not be sufficient for targeting problem areas like trigger points. Sue Hitzmann promotes practicing MELT along with professionally-administrated myofascial release, but not self-myofascial release, which she believes comes with too great a risk of injury. MELT may be a good supplement to rehabilitation or a method of maintaining good health, but may not be a treatment plan in itself. Due to the lack of research studies into the effectiveness of many alternative treatments, the best we can do is to be informed about options and to judge the potential effectiveness of a treatment based on the soundness of its theory and its applicability to our situation.

If you're interested in attending a MELT session, use the locator at to find a class near you. You may also wish to watch more videos online like the one above. Pursuing a treatment is always best when done with a trained instructor. However, if money is a barrier, then self-treatment is an option. Proceed carefully, especially if you have back pain or any other health condition.

Myofascia is increasingly becoming acknowledged as a back pain cause. MELT is yet another treatment option available to people looking to reduce pain and increase overall health.

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Exercises For Back Pain Relief

Many people tend to neglect to take care of their bodies. All they do is make sure that they go to work or make sure that they are able to do their jobs just so they can earn money. Well, working all day can make you a lot of money. It can help you sustain your everyday living with your family. With your salary, you might even be able to satisfy the wishes of your family. However, working all day can not only give you a lot of money. It can also give you many discomforts. Some people who work all day in front of their computer screens may acquire blurry visions because of too much exposure. Some who already has blurry vision can have blurrier vision. Some may even have their present eye conditions get triggered and become worse. On the other hand, others acquire neck pain from working all day long. The most common condition that a workaholic can get is back pain. Neck pain is more manageable than back pain. It can still make you accomplish your tasks a little bit more comfortably while back pain can be really intolerable at times. Not only people who work but also elderlyly complain about back pain. They make almost 1/3 of your body sore and make yourself able to attend to some of your tasks. Back pain is most likely to be acquired from having bad post which is prolonged for long periods of time. Fortunately, there are stretching and exercise programs that one can use to tie back pain.

Before exercising, make sure that you are wearing the appropriate work-out clothes. You must be free to move with the clothes you are wearing. Back pain relief can be achieved just by simple stretching drills. You must be calm, relaxed and precise when doing stretching exercises. You should not rush and be fast when performing exercise so you can feel the full effect of what you are doing. Each stretch position must be prolonged but should not exceed 20 seconds. Just try to reach mild tension when doing exercises. Too much tension can defeat the purpose of stretching and give you more pain in your body than what you are currently experiencing.

For the first kind of position that you might consider is doing half sit-ups. You know how sit-ups are made but this one; you would not lie and raise half of your body completely forward. All you have to do is lie down, bend your knees, stretch your arms and reach your knees. Do this slowly for as long as you can endure. The next one is relax by, still, lying down, raising both your legs and bending your knees to reach your chest for not more than 20 seconds. A variation of this exercise is performing it using separate legs. All the steps mentioned should be followed but stretching each leg at separate times. The next position you can do will require you to use a chair. First, you sit on the chair with your feet touching the floor. Bend the upper half portion of your body, including your head, and reach your feet. Stay in this position for not more than 20 seconds. To complete your stretching exercise, here is the last stretching position which will require your whole body to work. Using your upper back, make an arch position facing the floor with your head tilted down and with your hands and knees flattened on the floor to support your body. While you are on an arch position, contract the abdominal muscles. Be in this position for not more than 15 seconds. Relax after being on that position then repeat it again.

Back pain can be preceded with good posture. When picking up things, refrain from bending towards that object. It would be better if you would bend your knees maintaining an erect upper back position and then stretch to pick that object up. Putting too much weight on your back can give you back pain. If the pain is intolerable, make it a point that you would visit your doctor so he / she can give you proper medication for your condition but the most natural way to treat back pain is through regular exercising and stretching.

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