Lower back pain has a very notable presence within society, with at least 80% of individuals having experienced it in their lifetime.
Facet joint pain / facet syndrome
Cartilage in the spine wears down due to repetitive movements, poor posture and other spine conditions that change the way the facet joint aligns and movement causes pain. As the load of the body weight shifts to the facet joint, the cartilage breaks down, the joint space narrows and the bones rub together.
Discs become less spongy and less fluid-filled with age, reduced disc height and bone and ligament of the spinal facet joints. This can thicken and enlarge also pushing into the spinal canal. These changes cause narrowing of the lumbar spinal canal known as spinal stenosis.
The nerve from the spinal cord gets compressed by the herniated disc. This may occur due to heavy lifting or turning and twisting the body too fast, which may cause damage to the disc. In the elderly, the disc herniates due to wear and tear and less flexibility.
The stress fracture weakens the bone so much that it is unable to maintain its proper position in the spine and the vertebrae starts to shift or slip out of place.
Stress fracture in one of the vertebrae. Common among athletes in sports which involve repetitive stress on the lower back.
Chronic lower back pain
Acute lower back pain can develop into chronic lower back pain with persistent symptoms in a year even after an initial injury.
Sacroiliac Joint pain
This pain is caused by damage or injury to the joint between the spine and hip (pelvic).
Lower back pain has a very notable presence within society, with at least 80% of individuals having experienced it in their lifetime. A study done on medical students in Malaysia even showed that 68% of students had lower back pain. An article in The Star newspaper from 2020 even stated that 4 out of 5 adults, at some point in their lives will experience low back pain.
Lower back pain can be classified into 3 categories: acute, subacute and chronic lower back pain. These classifications are based on the duration of the pain. Generally, an acute lower back pain will last less than 4 weeks, subacute lower back pain from 4 weeks to 3 months, and chronic lower back pain from 3 months and longer.
There are many possible causes of lower back pain. Some are congenital or from birth, injuries like sprains or accidents, degenerative issues in the spine, nerve issues or some even non spinal causes like pain coming from tumours or kidney stones.
Physiotherapists can help to diagnose and treat lower back pain with the use of certain tests that can be done or through experience and the process of elimination. Physiotherapists will work towards reducing the level of pain along with other symptoms and work on improving activities of daily living through education.
Sport Therapy for Back Pain
Upon discharge from physiotherapy, the patient is expected to be pain-free in most daily activities. In the case of back injuries, the goal during sports therapy is to strengthen the muscles weakened through injury, improve joint mobility throughout the spinal column, and improve the flexibility and extensibility of the back muscles. Additionally, Rehamed’s sports therapy program aims to help the patient return to sport confidently and in a better condition than they initially were, before the injury.
In Rehamed, we can conduct tests in order to assess the strength of the trunk flexors and extensors. We use our proxomed machine to test the maximal isometric strength of the muscles that control the flexion of the trunk and the muscles controlling extension of the trunk. If there are vast differences in strength between the trunk flexors and extensors, the goal is to strengthen the weaker muscles to minimise the gap in strength. The stronger the muscles, the more resilient they are, and this will, in turn, lower the risk of injury.
At the end of your sports therapy journey, another round of assessments will be conducted to determine if you are clear to return to sport.
Lower back pain affects most people at some point in their life. You can take measures to prevent or relieve most back pain episodes as detailed below:
Be active physically
Effective back injury prevention programs use a multifaceted approach that includes exercises targeting strength, endurance, balance/posture, and neuromuscular control along the kinetic chain.
Maintain good posture and body mechanics
Most lower back pain is triggered by some combination of overuse, muscle strain, and injury to the muscles, ligaments, and discs that support the spine. This results in certain parts of the muscles tightening because the brain is triggering them into a state of tightness. So, most back pain comes from habit patterns acquired by poor posture that keep muscles tight automatically.
Proper lifting technique
Poor lifting technique can put a great amount of stress and shear force on the lower back, causing muscle strains or ligament sprains in the lower back. Repetitive poor lifting technique might put the vertebral disc at risk of rupturing and protruding out to pinch the nerve root that causes back pain.
Balanced diet and maintain healthy weight
People with extra weight in their stomachs cause the excess weight to pull the pelvis forward, straining the lower back and creating lower back pain.
Mobile: +60 12 771 9763
Office: +60 3 5031 5946
Lot 20 & 21, Level Mezzanine, UOA Business Park, No. 1 Jalan Pengaturcara U1/51a, Seksyen U1, 40150 Shah Alam, Selangor