One of the most common problems that chiropractors treat is back pain. Based on reports from General Practitioners, chronic back pain is experienced by 31 million people every year. Back pain only comes behind the common cold as the top reason why people seek medical care. Back pain is also the number 1 disability claim and the number 1 reason why employees miss work. Unfortunately, more than 30% of sufferers have chronic back pain, and live with pain on a daily basis. Chiropractors aim to help these sufferers experience life with less pain.
One thing that must be understood is that back pain is not a diagnosis, but a symptom of an underlying medical condition. The underlying cause of back pain can be multi-casual and the longer a patient goes without proper care the harder it is to pinpoint the direct source of their pain. Some of the more common diagnosis are:
Sciatica: is caused by the sciatic nerve being irritated, compressed or inflamed. The pain associated with this condition follows the sciatic nerve, which runs from the lower back and through the legs.
Arthritis: occurs when the protective fibers of bones wears down and causes a bone to bone contact. This results in swelling, pain and stiffness.
Bulging disc: The discs in the spine act as shock absorbers. Each disc holds a large amount of water and due to age and sometimes injury the discs start to lose water along with its shock absorbing function. Water loss causes the discs to deflate and bulge.
Osteoarthritis: Is mostly a function of age. Over time the cartilage that supports bones wears down and bone to bone contact occurs. This grinding can cause swelling, pain and heat.
Herniated disc: Causes pressure on nerves and has a tendency to cause compression of the sciatic nerve and results in leg pain. The underlying problem is the tearing of the outer lining of a disc that bulges out and compresses nerves.
Nerve compression: Injured or deformed vertebra and discs compress nerves, which causes irritation and pain.
Chiropractors use spinal manipulation therapy to decompress nerves in patients who have bulging discs, herniated discs, sciatica and any form of nerve compression. Other techniques are also used including the Spinal adjustments to align the spine. AICA’s Chiropractors use techniques that help patients alleviate back pain.