Sometimes it happens.
You’re going about your day nicely, you feel great and don’t think twice about any ‘health problems’ because they’re way off in the future anyway, but then all of a sudden you feel a twinge in your lower-back…
And immediately you know something’s not right.
Maybe you even begin to kid yourself into thinking that it’s nothing, that after a good nights sleep it will go away on it’s own. But the thing is when lower back pain strikes, (and if you don’t do anything about it quick), it can leave you suffering in pain for much longer than you should ever have to.
Which is exactly what happened to one of my patients, Angela, last week…
Angela came in to see me in a great deal of pain – back pain so bad that she couldn’t even get out of bed by herself in the morning, (not without struggling for 20 minutes anyway!).
Here’s what happened… two months ago Angela was simply bending down to fold her washing up and put it away when all of a sudden ‘PING!’, something in her back went. And like most people who come to see me with low-back pain, she brushed it off hoping she’d wake up the next day as if it never even happened.
But the following day, her pain was still there.
Angela’s back was still bad, but she decided to leave it a little longer as she didn’t want to bother the GP and thought if she just rested for a few more days, the pain would ease off.
But those days turned into weeks, and her back pain grew worse and worse – and the problem was, all of the sitting and resting she was doing to make it ‘better’, was adding pressure to her back causing a shooting pain to run down her leg, which meant very little to no walking, and even time off work…
…Also known as Sciatica.
Sciatica is when a disc at the base of your spine is put under too much pressure… and it irritates a nerve that runs down your leg – often causing numbness even pins and needles as well as pain.
The pain from Sciatica is often so excruciating it makes it almost impossible to get out of the house, drive to the shops and even sleep comfortably – and nearly always gets worse when you sit.
To put it simply – it’s a painful and life-limiting condition that can happen as a result of not getting your back pain seen to as soon as pain strikes.
But there are things you CAN do, such as specific exercises to help you get back to feeling healthy and on your feet again without worrying that your back is going to put you out.
Here’s Three Tips:
1. Avoid sitting for any longer than is absolutely necessary
2. As en exercise – stand up, put your hands on your bum and lean back – hold for 10 seconds. It will be painful, but you’re helping it the long run
3. When the pain is bad – go to bed and lie flat – avoid the temptation to curl up in the fetal position… this only makes it worse in the long run even though it feels nice at the time