A positive approach to low back pain

A positive approach to low back pain

Up to 80% of the population will experience low back pain at some point in their lives and, for many, a lack of understanding, or feelings of hopelessness, can exacerbate the situation. In support of Back Care Awareness Week (8th-12th October) we’re highlighting psychological and social concerns that can contribute to pain and how taking an informed approach can help.

Osteopath and Head of Research and Professional Development Phil Bright explains, “People naturally think about the worst case scenario when feeling pain; they may be concerned that family members have to share their burden of suffering, or that they’ll struggle financially if they can’t work. They may also suspect that people are doubting they’re actually in pain as a visible sign of injury may not be present.  These biopsychosocial issues can actually cause additional stress that may worsen how people see their own symptoms.

People can also, intuitively, stop performing activities if they think they will aggravate the back, assuming this will help prevent injury; unfortunately, the opposite is often true – altering the way we do something rather than stopping it altogether can be the best approach.  Understanding what’s influencing your pain and how it can be managed really does help.

If someone is experiencing back pain, we would always recommend seeking advice from a healthcare professional early on, to understand the condition and to take appropriate action. Current NHS guidelines for low back pain suggest a combination of physical activity and, where appropriate, manual therapy is a suitable approach; your GP or therapist will be able to advise on what’s best for you.”

For an appointment with the ESO Clinic please call 01622 685989 or contact us online at www.eso.ac.uk/clinic/clinic-contact/