PJP blog - physiotherapy for lower back pain

If you have lower back pain, physiotherapy can really help to reduce it and get you back to some kind of normal mobility. I provide my patients with strengthening and conditioning exercises to help them make changes that will reduce the chances of them hurting their back again.

The benefits of physiotherapy for lower back pain

If you have lower back pain that is causing you problems and it doesn’t seem to be improving after a couple of weeks, I would suggest booking an appointment to see me. Physiotherapy for lower back pain can help with a variety of types of back pain such as non-specific lower back pain, sciatica, back pain caused by ageing or spinal stenosis.

If you have visited your GP then they may recommend visiting a physiotherapist as part of your treatment. They may also suggest an exercise programme based on walking and painkillers.

When you first visit a physiotherapist, like me, they will ask you questions about any medical conditions you may have, your lifestyle and any medications you take. They will also want to know what symptoms you have been experiencing. They will also perform a detailed physical examination including how you move and how your back is functioning. Once I have gathered this information from a patient, I will explain what treatment I recommend and how I expect this will help their back pain.

Active and manual therapies

A physiotherapist may provide you with two different types of therapies – active and manual. The active therapies include exercises and movements that you can do and perform at home. These will help to improve flexibility, mobility and strength in your lower back.

Manual therapies will be performed by your physiotherapist and these include mobilisations of the spinal joints, deep tissue massage to the paraspinal muscles, and manual stretches. Gentle mobilisation of the spinal joints and adjacent soft tissues together with manual stretches performed by your physiotherapist will realign and mobilise your spine to help it return to its normal range of motion.

Electrotherapy may be used in the form of ultrasound, TENS, and/or interferential if appropriate. These modalities use sound waves and electrical currents to reduce swelling, relieve pain, stimulate muscle and increase blood flow to remove toxins and improve healing rates.

Acupuncture to help back pain may be provided in combination with the techniques above or used in isolation if appropriate to your symptoms and general health.

Once you have completed your first physiotherapy for lower back pain session with me, I will usually advise how many sessions you will need and how frequently you will need them. You may just need a one-off session but sometimes, with lower back pain, a course of appointments may be required.

If you would like to find out more about how physiotherapy can help lower back pain, then please get in touch and I can provide you with advice.

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