Low back pain is one of the most common complaints of patients coming into the office. Up to 80% of all people will suffer from low back pain at some point in their lives. Low back pain is so common because we sit for hours and hours, typically with poor posture. Our bodies and joints are meant to move, so the lack of movement creates stress on the spine leading to misalignments and fixations within the joints. When the joints are not aligned properly and unable to function as they should, it puts pressure on the spinal nerves leading to inflammation and pain.
Pain is typically the last thing to show up. By the time you’re feeling pain, the wear and tear on your spine and spinal discs (the spaces between the bones) has been going on for years. When left untreated, the bones of the spine begin to wear down and degenerate, which then causes the thinning of the spaces between the bones and compression of the nerves. This is a progressive process, so it is best to have this treated as soon as possible.
Chiropractic care is an excellent form of treatment for low back pain. With chiropractic adjustments, we ensure proper motion into the spine’s joints, taking pressure off the nervous system and allowing your pain not only to improve but also for the underlying problem to resolve fully.
Chiropractic Treatment for Low Back Pain
6 min watch
How We Treat Lower Back Pain In Arlington Heights, IL
Comprehensive Consultation and Exam
We want to know exactly what is causing your pain before recommending any treatment. Treating your low back pain starts with sitting with one of our doctors, who want to understand precisely what you are experiencing. We are always shocked when patients tell us they have never had as thorough of an evaluation with a doctor who truly listens.
Once we have a better idea of what has been going on, we will perform a thorough examination, including palpation of the spine, posture analysis, orthopedic tests, computerized neurological scans, and, if needed, digital X-rays. At the end of the evaluation, the goal is to determine if dysfunction in the spine and nervous system is the root cause of your complaint(s) and to determine the most effective treatment plan.
Specific Chiropractic Care in Arlington Heights, IL
Chiropractors are experts at identifying and correcting subluxations. A subluxation is a spinal joint that is misaligned or fixated. When this happens, it puts stress and pressure on the nervous system preventing the nerves from functioning how they should. A dysfunctional nervous system creates inflammation and triggers symptoms to arise.
There are three causes of subluxations (we call them the 3T’s):
- Traumas: stressful pregnancy, birthing interventions, traumatic birth, falls, injuries, accidents, repetitive motion, poor posture
- Toxins: antibiotics, poor diet, medication, environmental toxins
- Thoughts: fear, anxiety, stress, busy lifestyle, technology
Chiropractic adjustments are very specific movements performed on areas of the spine where subluxations are present. Adjustments release the pressure and stress placed on the nervous system allowing your body to heal and function the best it can.
Chiropractic Adjustments for Low Back Pain
2 min watch
Custom Therapeutic Exercise Plan
When spine joints are misaligned or not functioning how they should, it can create muscle weakness and imbalance. For this reason, you will receive a customized therapy plan that is to be done at home to ensure proper healing. These exercises are designed around your unique situation and will help strengthen and stabilize the healthy structure of the spine. These low back pain exercises help hold adjustments longer, preventing future injury and pain.
Spinal Flexion and Distraction in Arlington Heights, IL
Not only can restricted or misaligned joints create low back pain, but low back pain can also arise from the spinal discs – the spaces between the individual bones of the spine. These discs are cushions between the spinal bones, absorbing shock and providing space for the nerves to exit the spinal cord and service different parts of the body.
Spinal flexion and distraction is a technique that restores motion into the joints, brings fluid and nutrients to rehydrate the spinal discs, and relaxes the musculature connecting to the spine. This technique is especially effective for bulging discs or herniated discs as it restores proper disc placement between the bones of the spine.
Critical Technique for Lower Back Pain Relief
2 min watch
Common Causes of Low Back Pain in Arlington Heights, IL
Bulged Lumbar Discs
The disc is the space between the spine’s bones. It is similar to a jelly donut with a thicker, fibrous outside and a jelly-like substance on the inside. The discs function to absorb shock through the body. When the joints don’t function as they should, the discs begin to wear down and dehydrate. This causes the outer fibrous portion of the discs to thin, allowing the inner jelly substance to bulge outward, which can lead to compression on the nerves. Symptoms typically include pain within the low back or pain that can travel down the leg. At Sleigh Family Chiropractic, we have a specialized table that assists with restoring motion into the joints along with rehydrating and healing the discs with flexion and distraction of the spine.
Herniated Lumbar Discs
Herniated lumbar discs are similar to bulged lumbar discs, the most significant difference being more wear and tear. Herniated discs typically arise when a bulged disc is left untreated. The disc’s outer fibers become so thin they tear, allowing the inner jelly-like substance to break through. The pain is typically more severe, traveling down the leg. If left untreated, surgery may be the only option.
Degenerative Disc Disease
Degenerative disc disease is typically an age-dependent condition that occurs over time. It can also occur from obesity, smoking, poor posture, and repetitive movements. When the joints are not able to function as they should, they begin to wear down. This causes osteophytes to form on the bone and the thinning of the discs, both of which create compression on the spinal nerves leading to low back pain. It is best to get treatment earlier rather than later. Pain is typically the last thing to show up, meaning the problem and the degeneration has been going on for years. Chiropractic care can resolve the pain and slow the degenerative process, but we cannot reverse any damage that has already been done.
There is a canal that runs through the center of the bones of the spine. This is where the spinal cord is held. Spinal stenosis occurs when this spinal canal narrows, creating pressure on the spinal cord and the nerves that exit to go to all of our tissues. Pain can occur in the lower back, down one or both legs, and into the groin. Pain worsens with walking and standing and tends to improve with sitting, resting, and bending forward. If left untreated, you may develop weakness, numbness, or loss of bladder and bowel control.
Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction (SI Joint Pain)
The sacroiliac joint is where the pelvis meets the sacrum at the base of the spine. The function of the sacroiliac joint is to absorb the shock between the upper body, pelvis, and legs. Dysfunction can occur from hypermobility (the joints being too mobile) or hypomobility (the joints not functioning as they should). This is very common in pregnant women as they have higher levels of the relaxin hormone, making their joints more susceptible to misalignments. We use X-ray imaging and leg length checks performed at every adjustment to determine if sacroiliac joint dysfunction is the cause of your low back pain.
The 3 Best Exercises to Relieve Low Back Pain
3 min watch
Frequently Asked Questions
The best sleeping position for low back pain is on your back, however, if you tend to be a side sleeper, we recommend sleeping with your hips and knees bent upward with a pillow between the knees. This will ensure proper alignment in the lower back, the hips, and the pelvis.
We live in a world where we all experience stress daily. This could be physical stress, such as repetitive motion, sitting for hours on end, and poor posture. It could also be mental or emotional stress. Stress causes subluxations – joints that are not functioning how they should. When we experience daily stress, our body’s ability to heal slows down, which means our low back pain is not able to resolve.
Yes, a chiropractor can help with low back pain. Many times low back pain originates from subluxations within the spine. Subluxation is a joint of the spine that does not function how it should, creating stress on the nervous system. Chiropractic care restores motion into the joints removing subluxations and allowing the nervous system to work how it should, ultimately resolving your low back pain.
Both chiropractic and massage are great for low back pain, however, chiropractic focuses on restoring motion in joints that are not functioning properly. When the joints are restricted, muscles that connect to the spine can become tight. Chiropractic care ensures joints move as they should, taking pressure off the nerves and allowing muscles that connect to the spine to relax.
The sooner, the better. Pain is typically the last symptom to show up, but the problem has been developing for years. For this reason, it is best to come in earlier rather than later so you can have a quicker and smoother recovery.