With over 65 million people in the US struggling with it, lower back pain is an extremely common – and impactful – health condition. But while, for some, mild back pain is nothing more than a negligible inconvenience, for others it can become a severe condition with the potential to compromise every aspect of a person’s life. 

Luckily, you don’t need to give in and just accept the fact that you’ll have to live with back pain all of your life. Thanks to today’s advances in chiropractic care, you can return to live more independently, move freely, and make the most of your day-to-day activities. Even more importantly, you can prevent your lower back pain from becoming a chronic, long-term condition!

At the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center, Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. specializes in delivering tailored chiropractic care to help you regain your functionalities and live a pain-free life. Here are all the benefits chiropractic care offers for your lower back pain. 

What Does a Chiropractor Do? An Overview of Chiropractic Care

Licensed chiropractors are healthcare professionals that specialize in the non-surgical treatment of conditions related to the nervous and musculoskeletal systems. Chiropractic care – alongside treatments like spinal manipulation therapies – has become increasingly popular since the late 1890s, and, today, there is a growing body of scientific evidence supporting its effectiveness in the treatment of conditions like acute lower back pain and lumbar herniated disc.

While the approach and areas of expertise of chiropractors might change from a professional to another, the focus of the chiropractic discipline remains on using non-invasive treatments like spinal manipulation to prevent chronicity, restore movement, and relieve pain. 

Additionally, chiropractors leverage the connection between the body’s biomechanical functioning and the nervous system to restore the structural integrity of the spine and relieve pressure on nerves and other neurological tissue.

Beyond the initial body realignment and adjustments, chiropractors recommend exercises and lifestyle changes to support overall health and wellbeing. At the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center, Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. also puts an emphasis on creating an authentic relationship with each patient and using a holistic approach to health. 

Lower Back Pain: Causes and Symptoms

In 2017, over 577 million people around the world suffered from lower back pain, making this the most common musculoskeletal problem globally. But, regardless of how common this condition might seem, it affects the life of each person differently, making it challenging for healthcare providers to pinpoint the causes behind the pain – and find the best treatment for it. 

That is why millions of people affected by lower back pain end up taking painkillers for years before finding the right treatment! Luckily, when working with a chiropractor, you’ll undergo all the necessary tests to pinpoint the exact underlying cause of your pain and receive an ad hoc treatment plan. But what causes lower back pain? And how does this condition manifest itself? Here’s an overview. 

Causes of Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain – or the pain and discomfort that affects the lumbar section of the spine – is caused by trauma, injury, or unhealthy habits that have compromised the health and functionality of the muscles surrounding the spine, including the Iliopsoas, Gluteals, Multifidus, and Quadratus Lumborum muscles. 

Injuries like sprains or whiplash can inhibit their functionalities, thus making it painful for you to perform simple movements like bending, lifting, twisting, or walking, and you might experience pain radiating through your spine, hips, or legs. 

Traumatic injuries are the most common culprit behind lower back pain, but over 95% can’t trace their pain back to a single event, making it harder to identify what is causing the discomfort. What’s more, diseases like pancreatitis, kidney stones, fractures, herniated disks, osteoporosis, infections, and tumors can all lead to back pain. 

Aging, excessive weight, poor fitness conditioning, and lifestyle choices such as smoking or living a sedentary life can increase the risk of suffering from lower back pain. 

Symptoms of Lower Back Pain

While pain and discomfort in the lumbar section of the spine are undoubtedly the most common symptoms of lower back pain, this condition can manifest differently from one person to another. 

Some of the telltale signs that you should see a chiropractor include:

  • Muscle spasms
  • Long-lasting or worsening pain
  • Discomfort affecting your leg or hips
  • Stiffness and muscle tightening
  • Changes in how your spine looks
  • Limited range of movement
  • Poor posture and inability to walk and seat straight

When To See a Chiropractor for Lower Back Pain

Chiropractor care might not be the best option if your lower back pain is caused by chronic conditions like cancer or bone diseases. However, if the pain is caused by a misalignment in the spine stemming from bad postural habits or traumatic injury, spinal manipulation is recommended as a valid alternative or complementary therapy to pain-relieving drugs by the American College of Physicians.

In any case, it’s important to remember that lower back pain is not a normal part of life, and it can be treated or prevented by working with the right professional. 

Is Chiropractic Care Effective for Lower Back Pain?

As chiropractic care becomes more popular and respected, and the number of professionals who are licensed to deliver this kind of treatment increases, science has also started to look into the benefits chiropractic treatments can deliver. 

In particular, 2018 studies have highlighted that combining traditional medical care with chiropractic techniques like spinal manipulation can reduce pain intensity, prevent disability, and improve range of movement. Today, chiropractic techniques have been seen as particularly useful to help patients recover from lower back and neck pain. 

Note – if you suffer from osteoporosis or conditions like inflammatory arthritis and spinal cord compression, you should speak to both your chiropractor and your healthcare provider to ensure that chiropractic care is right for you. Patients taking blood-thinning medications and those who have a history of cancer should let their doctor know before undergoing spinal manipulation. 

Chiropractic Benefits for Lower Back Pain: Here’s How a Chiropractor Can Help

For over 83% of people experiencing lower back pain, a physician is the first port of call – but this does not make it the most effective one! Indeed, most healthcare professionals are instructed to treat lower back pain with painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs, unless there is an underlying serious issue that needs to be addressed by a specialist.

Opting to see a chiropractor can be an excellent choice if you are looking for a non-invasive and non-surgical intervention with far fewer side effects than the ones associated with a drug-based therapy. 

If you are unsure about whether this kind of treatment is the right choice for your needs, get in touch with the team at the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center to discover more of the benefits of seeking chiropractic care. 

Reduced Pain and Discomfort

Studies conducted over the past 15 years have shown that chiropractic care does not just reduce the pain and discomfort associated with your low back health condition, it also improves the spine’s functional status and chances of recovery. 

What’s more, conditions like osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia can also respond positively to the pressure that chiropractors apply to the tissue. Ultimately, the positive effects of chiropractic care can be seen both in the short and the long term. 

Non-Invasive and Non-Surgical Interventions

Patients affected by severe or worsening low back pain might consider undergoing surgery or taking medications for years to manage their condition. When opting for chiropractic care, you can access safe and effective therapies that are both non-invasive and non-surgical. 

What’s more, chiropractic interventions have minimal side effects, such as temporary discomfort in the treated area or mild headaches. Your chiropractor at the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center will tell you all you need to know about the upcoming treatment during your initial consultation so that you can make the necessary arrangements (i.e.: getting enough sleep and rest).

Improved Mobility, Flexibility, and Range of Motion

Partnering with a chiropractor to treat your lower back pain can offer far more benefits than just relieving pain! Indeed, when taking pain-relieving medications, you might not feel the discomfort, but this kind of therapy does not necessarily improve other aspects of your life. 

Instead, when working with a chiropractor – and using a more holistic approach to health – you’ll also work on improving your mobility, flexibility, and range of motion. 

This can prevent the worsening of your condition, protect you from injuries such as falls, slips, and sprains, and improve your range of motion. Your chiropractor will work with you to relieve pressure on joints and nerves, thus allowing you to improve the functionalities of your spine and body. 

Reduced Muscle Tightness and Nerve Irritation

Soft tissue therapy and mobilization – which are two of the main therapies used in chiropractic care – aim to relieve the pressure on nerves and muscles. In turn, this can relax tight muscles, relieve tension, and reduce the appearance of spasms. 

What’s more, if you have been experiencing symptoms like tingling and numbness on your arms and legs, reducing nerve irritation and pressure can help you regain control of your functionalities. 

Prevention of Chronicity

One of the main aims of undergoing chiropractic care is to prevent chronicity. Indeed, when your lower back pain worsens and becomes chronic, you might struggle to find a definitive cure or treatment. 

When addressed early on, pain in the lumbar section of the spine can be prevented or cured with spinal manipulation, mobilization, and soft tissue therapy. Just make sure to see your chiropractor as soon as you start noticing the first symptoms! 

Chiropractic Treatments for Lower Back Pain: What To Expect

While over 35 million Americans are treated by a chiropractor, this discipline isn’t yet as well-known as others. So, it is only reasonable to wonder what to expect when meeting with Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. for the first time! Here’s an overview of the process of treating lower back pain with chiropractic techniques. 

Chiropractic Examination and Diagnosis

When choosing chiropractic treatments, the first step will be to meet with your chiropractor and undergo an examination. 

During your first visit, your chiropractor will ask about your medical history, symptoms, and lifestyle, assess your goals, and carry out a physical examination of your spine Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. might also require laboratory analysis and X-rays to locate subluxations – or vertebrae that have shifted from their normal position – and exclude severe, underlying medical conditions. 

Some techniques used to carry out this physical examination include static and motion palpation and temperature testing. 

Most examinations will aim to determine whether the lower back pain stems from potentially serious health issues (i.e.: tumor, infection, or neurological problems), nerve problems, or non-specific biomechanical issues. 

Types of Chiropractic Treatments

As the research around chiropractic disciplines expands, professionals have started to specialize in multiple treatments. However, the most common types of chiropractic treatments are:

  • Spinal manipulation – chiropractors specialize in delivering a high-velocity, lever-arm-thrust hands-on manipulation of the spine. This process is known as “chiropractic adjustment” and aims to reduce pressure on nerves and realign the vertebrae. 
  • Mobilization – mobilization is a low-velocity type of manipulation that aims to stretch the muscles, restore range of motion, and improve flexibility. 

When your chiropractor at the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center performs the movements above, you are likely to hear an audible release of gas – a “pop” that is scientifically referred to as joint cavitation. This is commonly accompanied by a sensation of relief.  

Beyond Chiropractic Treatments: Patient-Driven Care and Adjustments

Your sessions with your chiropractor have the aim to reduce pain and discomfort in the lower back pain – but they can do much more than that! Indeed, chiropractors keep the focus on the treatment on the overall improvement of health and wellbeing.

That is why your chiropractor will also provide other complementary, but just as important, services, including:

  • Recommend patient-driven care, including exercise and fitness routines
  • Suggest lifestyle changes, such as quitting smoking and reducing alcohol intake
  • Offer dietary recommendations
  • Set goals to improve pain, disability issues, and physical conditioning  

At the Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center, Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. will help you adjust every aspect of your life to improve your spinal health and overall wellbeing. 

Get in Touch With Dr. Christopher Campo, D.C. at Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center – And Take the First Step Toward a Pain-Free Life!

While chiropractic care can be extremely efficient in reducing lower back pain and discomfort by 40-80%, the journey towards seeing improvements can last four weeks or longer. The specialized team at Desert Shadows Chiropractic & Wellness Center can help you better understand how to modify your lifestyle to achieve the best results and offer a tailored treatment plan designed around your unique needs.