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Low Back Pain What is low back pain? Pain and stiffness in the lower back is a common condition. It is one of the most common reasons people miss work. Your lower back is made up of 5 bones called lumbar vertebrae. Muscles and ligaments help keep the vertebrae in their proper position. In between the vertebrae are gel-like shock absorbers called disks. Nerves that lead to the rest of the body pass through the bones of the back. What is the cause? You may have pain if any part of your back is injured, strained, or affected by illness. The most common causes of back pain include: Frequent lifting or carrying of heavy objects Spending a lot of time sitting or standing in one position or bending over Being overweight Less common causes of back pain include: A disk that bulges or is pushed out of place by injury or a severe strain. A bulging (herniated) disk can pinch the nerves that pass through the bones, leading to pain in the legs. Injuries caused by a fall, unusually strenuous exercise, or even violent sneezing or coughing. Swelling and irritation from an infection or an immune system problem. A congenital condition (a problem that you were born with). A degenerative condition (a problem that causes the bones, joints, disks, or muscles to break down, such as arthritis). What are the symptoms? Symptoms include: Pain in the back or legs Tingling or numbness in the legs or feet Stiffness, spasms, or limited motion The pain may be constant or may happen only in certain positions. It may get worse when you cough, sneeze, bend, twist, or strain during a bowel movement. The pain may be in only one spot or it may spread to other areas, most commonly down the buttocks and into the back of the thigh. How is it diagnosed? Your healthcare provider will review your medical history and examine you. The exam may include different types of X-rays to look at the bones and soft tissue of your back. How is it treated? The treatment for low back pain depends on the cause. Your healthcare provider may recommend: Rest. It's best to try to stay active, so try not to rest in bed longer than 1 to 2 days or the time your provider recommends. Exercise. Your provider may recommend physical therapy or exercises that you can do at home. Medicine. Several types of medicines may help lessen back pain Take all medicine as recommended by your healthcare provider. Surgery. Depending on the cause of your back pain and if you keep having symptoms, you may need to have surgery. However, most common causes of back pain don’t need surgery. How can I take care of myself? Take an anti-inflammatory medicine, such as ibuprofen, or other medicine as directed by your healthcare provider. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, may cause stomach bleeding and other problems. These risks increase with age. Read the label and take as directed. Unless recommended by your healthcare provider, do not take for more than 10 days. Put an ice pack, gel pack, or package of frozen vegetables, wrapped in a cloth on the painful area every 3 to 4 hours for up to 20 minutes at a time for the first 2 or 3 days. After 2 or 3 days of using ice, put a hot water bottle or electric heating pad on your back. Cover the hot water bottle with a towel or set the heating pad on low so you don’t burn your skin. Pain is the best way to judge the pace you should set for increasing your activity and exercise. Minor discomfort, stiffness, soreness, and mild aches don’t need to limit your activity. Get a back massage by someone trained in giving massages. Talk with a counselor if your back pain is related to tension caused by emotional problems. Ask your healthcare provider: How and when you will hear your test results How long it will take to recover from this condition What activities you should avoid and when you can return to your normal activities How to take care of yourself at home What symptoms or problems you should watch for and what to do if you have them Make sure you know when you should come back for a checkup. How can I help prevent low back pain? You can reduce the strain on your back by doing the following: Keep your abdominal and back muscles strong. Exercise moderately every day, using stretching and warm-up exercises suggested by your provider or physical therapist. Exercising regularly will not only help your back, it will also help keep you healthier overall. Practice good posture. Stand with your head up, shoulders straight, chest forward, weight balanced evenly on both feet, and pelvis tucked in. Whenever you sit, sit in a straight-backed chair and hold your spine against the back of the chair. Use a footrest for one foot when you stand or sit in one spot for a long time. This keeps your back straight. Protect your back. When you need to move a heavy object, don't face the object and push with your arms. Turn around and use your back to push backwards so the strain is taken by your legs. When you lift a heavy object, bend your knees and hips and keep your back straight. If you do a lot of heavy lifting, wear a belt designed to support your back. Avoid lifting heavy objects higher than your waist. Carry packages close to your body, with your arms bent. Sit close to the pedals when you drive and use your seat belt and a hard backrest or pillow. Lie on your side with your knees bent when you sleep or rest. It may help to put a pillow between your knees. Put a pillow under your knees when you sleep on your back. You may need to stop sleeping on your stomach. Lose weight if you are overweight. Comment, Like and Share with your Friends www.physio-therapy.cz
<b>Original Editor</b> - Daniel Alcorn as part of the The Jackson Clinics Residency Project<p><b>Top Contributors</b> - Daniel Alcorn, Rob Sigler, Laura Ritchie, Kris …
Frozen Shoulder Exercises Wand exercise, Flexion: Stand upright and hold a stick in both hands, palms down. Stretch your arms by lifting them over your head, keeping your arms straight. Hold for 5 seconds and return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times. Wand exercise, Extension: Stand upright and hold a stick in both hands behind your back. Move the stick away from your back. Hold this position for 5 seconds. Relax and return to the starting position. Repeat 10 times. Wand exercise, External rotation: Lie on your back and hold a stick in both hands, palms up. Your upper arms should be resting on the floor with your elbows at your sides and bent 90 degrees. Use your uninjured arm to push your injured arm out away from your body. Keep the elbow of your injured arm at your side while it is being pushed. Hold the stretch for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Wand exercise, Internal rotation: Stand with your uninjured arm behind your head holding the end of a stick. Put your injured arm behind your back at your waist and grab the stick. Pull the stick up behind your back by straightening the elbow of your uninjured arm and bending the elbow of your injured arm. Hold this position for 5 seconds and then go back to the starting position. Repeat 10 times. Wand exercise, Shoulder abduction and adduction: Stand and hold a stick with both hands, palms facing away from your body. Rest the stick against the front of your thighs. Use your uninjured arm to push your injured arm out to the side and up as high as possible. Keep your arms straight. Hold for 5 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Scapular active range of motion: Stand and shrug your shoulders up and hold for 5 seconds. Then squeeze your shoulder blades back and together and hold 5 seconds. Next, pull your shoulder blades downward as if putting them in your back pocket. Relax. Repeat this sequence 10 times. Pectoralis stretch: Stand in an open doorway or corner with both hands slightly above your head on the door frame or wall. Slowly lean forward until you feel a stretch in the front of your shoulders. Hold 15 to 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times. Biceps stretch: Stand facing a wall (about 6 inches away from the wall). Raise your injured arm out to your side and place the thumb side of your hand against the wall (palm down). Keep your arm straight. Rotate your body in the opposite direction of the raised arm until you feel a stretch in your biceps. Hold 15 seconds. Repeat 3 times. Sleeper stretch: Lie on your injured side with your hips and knees flexed and your arm straight out in front of you. Bend the elbow on your injured side to a right angle so that your fingers are pointing toward the ceiling. Then use your other hand to gently push your arm down toward the floor. Keep your shoulder blades lightly squeezed together as you do this exercise. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds. Repeat 3 times. Comment, Like and Share with your Friends www.physio-therapy.cz
A new study shows that therapy is almost as good as having knee surgery for improving movement and reducing pain for some with knee arthritis or even …