Body Basics: Low back and neck pain

Low back and neck pain can reach excruciating levels of pain for an individual. Both responsible for daily movement and comfort, we deemed it necessary to break down the different types of pain experienced in the low back and neck. Find out what you need to know now.

back and neck pain

 

What is Low Back Pain?

Low back pain can involve a wide variety of symptoms. It can range from mild and slightly annoying to severe and debilitating. Low back pain may start suddenly, or it could start slowly and gradually get worse over time.

People report a wide range of low back symptoms. For example:

  • Low back pain that is dull or achy 
  • Burning pain that radiates from the low back to the buttocks and back of the thigh, sometimes into the lower legs or feet; can include numbness or tingling 
  • Muscle spasms and tightness in the low back, pelvis, and hips
  • Pain that worsens after prolonged sitting or standing
  • Difficulty standing up straight or going from standing to sitting

Causes of Low Back Pain

There are numerous causes of low back pain. An assessment by a health professional such as a chiropractor or physiotherapist is important to differentiate between the various causes of lower back pain as the management of different conditions may vary.  

Strains and sprains occur when a muscle or ligament is stretched too far leading to injury. This can occur from lifting, sports, car accidents or falling. Disc injuries such as herniations or fissures can be a common cause of lower back pain and sometimes also leg pain or numbness and tingling. Disc degeneration and osteoarthritis can also occur due to aging or past injuries. Lumbar facet joints and sacroiliac joints are common causes of lower back pain. Other less common causes that must be considered and ruled out include infections, tumours and autoimmune conditions.

Exercise prescription may depend on the cause of lower back pain. It is highly recommended to get a proper assessment prior to performing any exercise.

 

Low Back Pain

What is Sciatica?

Breathing for Back Pain

Deadbugs

Bird Dogs

 

What is Neck Pain?

Pain in the neck can range from minor tension that is easily ignored to severe and interferes with daily activities, such as the ability to work, dress, drive, concentrate, or sleep. Sometimes neck pain can lead to a significantly reduced range of motion.

Causes of Neck Pain

Neck pain can be caused by a wide range of factors including poor posture, motor vehicle accidents, sports injuries and sleeping in an awkward position to name a few. 

The most common causes of neck pain involve the muscles and soft tissues and/or the facet joints of the neck. Cervical disc injuries and osteoarthritis can also cause neck pain. Less common causes to consider and rule out include infections, tumours, and other pathologies. An assessment by a health professional such as a chiropractor or physiotherapist is important to differentiate between the various types of neck pain in order to determine the appropriate therapy or referral.

Why schedule an appointment with MSK Clinics

Our team of highly trained chiropractors and physiotherapists are capable of performing a thorough examination to determine the cause of your pain and suggesting the appropriate therapy. It is important to differentiate between the various causes of neck or lower back pain because the management of each condition can vary. Our therapists see these conditions every day so they are best suited to help you manage your condition. They also regularly complete continuing education programs in order to provide you with the most up-to-date care possible.

If you feel pain in the neck or lower back, let our trained professionals diagnose it quickly. Book your appointment today.