If you're having lower back pain and your condition isn't getting any better, consider seeing a chiropractor. A few chiropractic adjustments to your spine might be beneficial. Your chiropractor might also use other treatments to help relieve your back pain.
Once your pain is managed, the chiropractor might start you on physical therapy treatments. Here's why physical therapy is often an important part of healing back pain.
Therapy Strengthens Muscles That Support Your Back
If you've had pain for a long time, your back muscles may be weak due to inactivity. Weak muscles can't support your back properly, and that contributes to your back pain. A therapist leads you through the appropriate exercises and makes sure you maintain proper form so your back muscles get stronger. With strong muscles, you'll have better posture and less strain on your back.
Physical therapy focuses mainly on the muscles and other tissues in your back while chiropractic treatments focus on your spine. Together, the two types of treatments can help your back get stronger and move your spine into proper alignment.
Stretches Can Improve Spine Mobility
Besides exercises that make your back stronger, a physical therapist can teach you how to stretch your back properly so it regains its normal range of motion and flexibility. This helps you stay mobile and active by reducing pain and stiffness in your back.
The therapist may encourage you to do stretches every day to stay limber even after your back pain is gone. By keeping your back strong and flexible, your back pain may go away and have a lower chance of returning.
Physical Therapists Help With Pain Management
Physical therapy isn't only about exercises and stretches. The therapist can also provide treatments that help with back pain relief. Reducing pain is often the first goal when you see a chiropractor or physical therapist so you can tolerate more intensive exercises and adjustments.
Exercises and treatments often start out gentle and increase in intensity and duration as you get stronger. You might need hot and cold treatments, electronic stimulation, nerve decompression, or ultrasound therapy at first to help you through the worst of your pain. These treatments may be given by your chiropractor or physical therapist.
Results from your therapy sessions may not be immediate since the goal is to heal your injury or build muscles, and that takes time. During that time, your chiropractor might slowly wean off your pain medications until you can rely on natural treatments to bring relief as your back pain gets better.
For more information on how to improve lower back pain, contact a professional near you.