BACK CARE in Rossendale.
'I have back pain what can I do to help?'
Here are some guidelines.
Scroll down for self help.
Firstly- Red Flags, if you have any of the following you need to consult your GP immediately.
- a fever (high temperature)
- redness or swelling on your back
- pain down your legs and below your knees
- numbness or weakness in one or both legs or around your buttocks
- loss of bladder or bowel control (incontinence)
- constant pain, particularly at night
- pain that is getting much worse and is spreading up your spine.
Reasons for Back Pain:-
- standing, sitting or bending down for long periods
- lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling loads that are too heavy, or going about these tasks in the wrong way
- having a trip or a fall
- being stressed or anxious
- being overweight
- having poor posture
- Digestion problems- inc IBS
- Inadequate muscle support of the trunk and spine
- lack of proper movement in the spine and hips due to inadequate stretching/exercise
- repetitive movements either in work or sport which can cause a muscle imbalance.
- carrying a bag on one shoulder for extended periods.
So many back problems can be helped by exercise and Pilates. I often see disbelief as there is a presumption that the pain must be something more serious, and often it is structural and underuse/misuse of the body. Most exercise will feel an improvement in back problems however a good Pilates class should look at the small intrinsic balance and alignment of the posture first, before and during any exercise so the large global muscles can do the job they are meant to, that is pushing, lifting, carrying rather than supporting an area that is vunerable or unbalanced. Chronic pain is draining and affects all your life- learn how to help yourself and feel a weight lifted when your pain is dimished or gone and you have skills to know how to move and exercise to self care your back and body. Check out our PILATES page.
You must however get your back pain checked by your GP and a referral before attending a class.
There may be other, more serious underlying causes of your low back pain, but these are rare. They include:
- fracture - a crack or break in one of the bones in your back
- osteoporosis - a condition where bones lose density causing them to become weak,
- brittle and more likely to break
- a slipped disc - this is when a disc bulges so far out that it puts pressure on your spinal nerves
- spinal stenosis - a condition in which the spaces in your spine narrow
- spondylolisthesis - when one of your back bones slips forward and out of position
- degenerative disc disease - when the discs in your spinal cord gradually become worn down
- osteoarthritis - a wear-and-tear disease that can particularly affect the joints of your spine
- rheumatoid arthritis - an inflammatory condition in which your immune system causes inflammation of the lining of your joints and surrounding structures
How to self Help:-
First- whats the difference between chronic and acute?
Chronic back pain is something that build up over a period of time. Acute is a sudden onset.
Acute pain and injury is usually treated with ice.
However the back and neck are slightly different. Applying ice to the back can sometimes aggrevate the pain, this is because it is rare to strain the muscles of the back and is more usually a spasm. Here is a checklist for the need for ice if its a strain.
-Did it hit you suddenly during strong stretching or a moment of athletic intensity? Were you lifting something way too heavy and/or awkward? In other words, did you have an “oh, shit” moment?
-Is there a spot in the muscle that’s extremely sensitive to poking? (It may even be little bit deformed — is there a bump or a depression?)
-Is the skin flushed and hot? Does it look puffy?
If yes Ice is your best option.
Otherwise heat is your prefered option.
This postion is called called constructive rest postion CRP and is beneficial to everyone ( whether your back pain is acute or chronic- or even if you have no back pain!)
Lie on your back with your feet up, knees at 90 degrees, a book or low pillow under your head. a small rolled up towel under your lower arch of your back. Rest for at least 30 mins. Or a large pillow or bolster under your knees
Asprin and Ibroprofen are also good to reduce inflammation, but continue to take it easy!
If applying ice do so every 2 hours. After 48 hours , heat or a warm bath can be applied to relax the muscles.
If there is no improvement after 72 hours see your GP or go to a private physiotherapist (for quick treatment- I believe the sooner the better, the quicker you are seen the faster the recovery! If you tell your GP your back is affecting your job, you have to be prioritized to see a Physiotherapist)
If you have chronic (long term) back ache it is better to keep moving rather than prolonged periods of lying or sitting. Below are some things you can do to help.
How to have a healthy lifestyle and healthy back.
Never underestimate the power of exercise to help your back! Exercise that is designed to support and improve your posture and alignment.
Begin a back exercise program that is known for back care- Rossendale ENERGYBODi Pilates is specially designed for this.
Emotions/ past trauma, upset and stress are all factors in back ache. That is why the enviroment at ENERGYBODi is designed to soothe and unwind.
- Eat a nutrient-rich, balanced diet. What we eat and drink, as we know, is vital to our well-being and health. Getting a varied diet can be tricky sometimes, but also many minerals are missing from our food due to heavy use of the soil, which becomes depleted. It can take five years for an organic farmer to get the nutrients back into the soil for his crops.
- There are actually about eighteen essential nutrients that contribute to bone health; Magnesium is definitely one of the most essential, because it stimulates a particular hormone called calcitonin. And, it also suppresses a hormone called parathyroid that breaks down bone. Some of the essentials are Vitamin D, Calcium, Magnesium, Vitamin C, B6, B12, K2, Zinc, Potassium, iron, plus horsetail and liquorice root are recommended and are in the Nature Sunshine Skeletal health.
- Magnesium is the most powerful muscle relaxant ever!!! This critical mineral is actually responsible for over 300 enzyme reactions and is found in all of your tissues -- but mainly in your bones, muscles, and brain. You must have it for your cells to make energy, for many different chemical pumps to work, to stabilize membranes, and to help muscles relax. When was the last time you had a good dose of sea vegetables (seaweed), nuts, greens, and beans? Magnesium is very common to be deficient in. It is absolutely vital for relaxing and contracting the muscles. If you are someone who gets cramps this supplement is vital. However not just muscles but bones... Magnesium helps to fix calcium properly. It may blow some people's mind that the calcium supplements they're taking are not only useless, but are actually contributing to osteoporosis if they are not balanced with the right minerals!
- Vitamin B12 is necessary for healthy bone marrow and for the body - and the spine - to grow and function normally. If you’ve got insufficient B12 levels in your blood, your health will become vulnerable and defenceless against disease. Vitamin B12 deficiency is an important risk factor in osteoporosis. When the level of the vitamin falls, the deficiency triggers the demineralization of the bone. Daily life gets harder for you to endure as you experience debilitating symptoms such as: muscle weakness, fatigue, tingling in your extremities, mental fogginess, memory problems, and general apathy. Vit B12 is used for cell regeneration and nerve tissue.Vitamin B12 can be found in meat products, such as liver, fish, red meat and poultry; dairy products, such as milk, eggs and cheese; and green leafy vegetables, such as spinach, kale and broccoli.
- Getting enough calcium and vitamin D is essential to building strong, dense bones when you're young and to keeping them strong and healthy as you age. Feeling tired and achy is a frequent wintertime complaint. According to Dr. Holick, many who see their doctor for such signs end up being misdiagnosed as having fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome.
Other benefits of Vitamin D are surprising....Vitamin D is very important for reducing hypertension, atherosclerotic heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. According to Dr. Holick, one study showed that vitamin D deficiency increased the risk of heart attack by 50 percent. What’s worse, if you have a heart attack and you’re vitamin D deficient, your risk of dying from that heart attack creeps up to 100 percent! “Many of these symptoms are classic signs of vitamin D deficiency osteomalacia, which is different from the vitamin D deficiency that causes osteoporosis in adults,” he says. “What’s happening is that the vitamin D deficiency causes a defect in putting calcium into the collagen matrix into your skeleton. As a result, you have throbbing, aching bone pain.”
- Vitamin C is necessary for the development of collagen, which is an important part of the process that allows cells to be able to form into tissue. This is extremely important for healing problems caused by injured tendons, ligaments and vertebral discs, as well as for keeping bones and other tissues strong. Vitamin C can control inflammation, reduce back pain, repair and maintain the discs of the spine, and protect bones from losing calcium. Linking back pain to osteoporosis is an interesting concept and can help many back pain sufferers aware of their increased risk of osteoporosis.
- Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol use.
- Maintain a healthy weight— additional pounds place excess strain on spinal vertebrae and discs.
- Stay well-hydrated. The body is 70% water, and sufficient hydration contributes to intervertebral disc health and that of other back related structures and functions.
- Get your vision checked. Poor vision can affect the way you carry yourself, which can contribute to back problems.
- Regular exercise- particularly one that uses awareness of healthy back movement and back strengthening exercises eg Rossendale Pilates.
I highly recommend Nature Sunshines Skeletal Strength. The company has been going over 3 decades- the quality of their products is of some of the highest I have come across- and in this case you get what you pay for in the world of supplements. Cheap off the shelf supermarket supplements are full of additives, chalk, fillers and low quality. If you are going to supplement then treat it like you would do any medicine, with respect and the best.
Join ENERGYBODi and exercise classes that specializes in Back Exercises with awareness of healthy movement, posture and alignment and specific exercises for Back Care .