OrthosportsPT_The Difference Between Back Pain & Sciatica

Health & Fitness

Does life ever feel like one large pain in the back? Back pain is difficult to deal with on a daily basis, yet for so many people, this is a total reality. By certain estimates, as many as 85 percent of adults in the United States struggle with back pain at some point in their lives. The most common type of back pain experienced is in the lower back, and it can happen for any variety of reasons. Being in a car accident can cause you to experience lingering back pain for years after the accident. Accidents at work can lead to similar consequences. But sometimes the cause of your back pain isn’t as straightforward. Back pain can also develop for any number of common reasons — things that you do every day without thinking twice. An old desk chair that doesn’t provide much lumbar support can take its toll over time, as can wearing shoes that don’t have much support, or even gaining weight, particularly around the stomach area. Too many people consider back pain a normal experience of their lives and don’t immediately seek support that could make the pain an issue of the past. Working with a physical therapist is, hands down, the best thing that you can do when you are looking to overcome back pain. A physical therapist can identify the cause of the back pain and present you with helpful strategies that can strengthen your back and reduce the severity of your pain. Physical therapy for back pain often includes a combination of targeted massage, flexibility and range of motion training, muscle building, and targeted stretching techniques. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BACK PAIN & SCIATICA

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Being educated about your back pain can help you make the right choices to overcome it as quickly as possible. One of the biggest problems with back pain is that it lingers. This leadsmany people to deal with back pain for years on end without seemingly any end in sight. While there is back pain that develops as a result of strain or sprain, there is also something called lowback degenerative disc disease, which happens when the discs in your spine weaken. This frequently develops as a result of repetitive back injury and can also develop as a result of age. With degenerative disc disease, the space between the discs begins to collapse and become unstable and will cause back pain to develop. When you work with a physical therapist to overcome back pain as a result of degenerative disc disease, your physical therapist will begin by strengthening core muscle groups, which includes the abdominal wall, and will provide you with targeted massage and stretching techniques to alleviate pain. While some back pain is easy to identify as pain, such as is the case with degenerative disc disease, there are other situations in which the pain may be a bit more complicated to understand. One of the most common back issues experienced in the United States is sciatica pain, and this sort of pain is often a lot more difficult to identify — especially by those who aren’t familiar with the problem. How can you tell the difference between back pain and sciatica pain? The answer is that sciatica pain is characterized by the following factors: • Constant pain is only present in one side of the buttocks or leg • The pain becomes worse when you are sitting • The leg pain develops more as a burning, tingling or searing sensation, and not as a plain ache • There is a sharp pain that occurs at times, making it sometimes difficult to stand or walk • The pain is radiating, shooting down the leg and sometimes even into the feet and toes THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN BACK PAIN & SCIATICA (Continued)

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Sciatica pain develops in the nerves that connect the lower back to the legs, and so while the pain itself is generated from the back, a lot of time, the experience of the pain is more largely associated with the upper legs. What’s more, sciatica pain doesn’t always develop like pain in the traditional sense. Sciatica pain instead causes a buildup of tingling, numbness andweakness in the lower back and upper legs, and the pain isn’t consistant either. The sensation will typically run through the leg in waves, causing discomfort at seemingly unpredictable times. If you are experiencing back pain and you haven’t talked to amedical professional about the concern, then now is the time to take action. Working with a physical therapist can cut your time struggling with back pain literally in half. For more information about overcoming back pain, contact us by calling our location nearest you. Source: www.spine-health.com/conditions/sciatica/what-you-need-know-about-sciatica Sciatic pain develops in th n rves hat connect the lower back to th legs, and so while the pain itself is g nerated from the back, a l t of time, the xp rience of the pain is more largely associated wi the upp r legs. What’s more, sciatica pain doesn’t lways develop like pain in the traditional sense. Sciatic pain instead cau es a buildup of tingling, numbness andweakness in the lower back and upper legs, and the pai isn’t consis an either. Th sensation will typically run through th leg in waves, causing discomfor at seemingly unpredictable times. If you are xp rie cing back pai and you haven’t talked to amedical professional about the concern, the now is the time o take action. Working with a physical therapist can cut your time struggling with back pain literally in half. For more information about overcoming back pain, con act us by calling our location n arest you. Source: ww.spin -health.com/conditions/s i tica/what-you-need-know-about-s i tica Relieve Pain In Minutes Try this exercise if you are experiencing back pain. PRONE ALTERNATE ARM & LEG L I FT Lying flat on your stomach, slowly raise your right leg and left arm off of the ground. Keep your arms and legs straight. Inhale while lifting up. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Exhale while setting down. Repeat using the opposite arm and leg. Alternate 3 times on each side. Exercisescopyrightof 1 Relieve Pain In Minutes Try this xercise if you are exp rie cing back pain. PRONE ALTERNATE ARM & LEG L I FT Lying flat n your stomach, s owly raise your right leg and left arm f of the ground. Keep your arms and legs straight. Inhale wh le lifting up. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds. Exhale whil setting down. Repeat using the pposite arm and leg. Alternate 3 times on each side. Exercisescopyrightof 1

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You can tell that you might have a sway back if your back is over-arched and your pelvis is in a rocked forward position. Having your body in sway back position lengthens the hamstrings and makes them feel tight. Individuals with sway back posture often put more weight on their toes than heels when they walk. In addition to abdominal weakness, a lack of strength in the gluteals and hamstrings can cause your pelvis to be rotated forward, also known as anterior pelvic tilt. Often caused by sitting without the proper exercise and stretching needed to counteract the effects, this forward pelvic tilt forces your spine to curve. You may notice that the muscles in the front of your pelvis (abdominals) and thighs are tight, while the ones in the back (gluteals) are weak. While the abdominals stabilize the pelvis by pulling upward on the front, the gluteals and hamstrings offer stability by pulling down on the rear of the pelvis. Running is a great way to strengthen the gluteals. Likewise, the abdominal muscles can be conditioned through physical therapy and easy weight training exercises. You can tell that you might ave a sway back if your back is over-arched and your pelvis is in a rocked forward position. Having your body in sway back position lengthens the hamstrings and makes them feel tight. Individuals with sway back posture often put more weight on their toes than heels when they walk. In addition to abdominal weakness, a lack of strength in the gluteals and hamstrings can cause your pelvis to be rota ed forward, also known as anterio pelvic tilt. Often caused by sitt ng without the proper ex rcise and stretching needed to counteract the eff cts, this forward pelvic tilt forces your spine to curve. You may notice that the muscles in the front of your pelvis (abdominals) and thighs are tight, while the ones in the back (gluteals) are weak. While the abdominals stabilize the pelvis by pulling upward on the front, the gluteals and hamstrings offer stability by pulling down on the r ar of the pelvis. Running is a great way to strengthen the gluteals. Likewise, the abdominal muscles can be conditioned through physical therapy and easy weight training ex rcise . You can tell that you mig t have sway back if your back is ove -arche and your pelvi is in a rocked forward position. Having your body in sway back position lengthens the hamstrings and makes th m feel tight. Individuals with sway back postur often put more weight on their oes t an heels w n they walk. In addition to abdominal w akness, lack of strength in the gluteals and hamstrings an cause your pelvis to be rotated forward, also k own as ante ior pelvic tilt. Often caused by sitting wi hout the p op r x rcise and s retchi g ne ed t counterac the ffects, this forward pelvic tilt forces your spine to curve. You may notice that the muscles in the fr nt of your pelvis (abdomin ls) and t ighs are tight, while th o es in the back (glute ls) are weak. Whil the abdominals stabiliz the pelvis by pulling upward on the front, the glute ls and hamstrings offer s ability by pulling d wn on th rear of the pelvis. Running is a gre t way o strengthen the gluteals. L k wis , the abdominal muscles can be conditioned through physical therapy and easy weight training x rci es.

On a daily basis, walking and running occur more than many other physical activities. Your physical ability can be impacted by your level and method of motion. Sometimes, the way you move might be the reason you have pain, and physical therapy can help you change it. Running is as natural as breathing. The motion involves many body parts interacting together such as your six weight bearing joints (ankles, knees, and hips). If these joints are not in good alignment, you might be at risk for structural pain. One minor running error repeated many times can do an incredible amount of damage to your back, muscles, nerves and joints. This could eventually cause pain and arthritis. Often, the cause of back pain is poor strength -- specifically, weak abdominal muscles. The pelvis is held in place by numerous muscles, including the abdominals, hamstrings, gluteals and hip flexors. An imbalance or weakness in these muscles can lead to pelvic misalignment, causing the pelvis to tilt forward or backward. Forward tilt of the pelvis leads to a sway back. On a daily basis, walking and running occur more than many other physical activities. Your physical ability can be impacted by our lev l and method of moti n. Sometimes, the way ou move might be the reason you have pain, and physical therapy can help you change it. Running is as natural as breathing. The moti n involves many body parts interacting together such as your six weight bearing joints (ankles, knees, and hips). If thes joints are not in good alignment, you might be at risk for structural pain. One minor running erro ep ated many times can do an incredible amount of damage to your back, muscles, nerves and joints. This could ev ntually cause pain and arthritis. Often, the cause of back pain is poor strength -- specifically, weak abdominal muscles. The pelvis is held in place by numerous muscles, including the abdominals, hamstrings, gluteals and hip flexors. An imbal nce or weakness in thes muscles can lead to pelvic misalignment, causing the pelvis to tilt forward or backward. Forward tilt of the pelvis leads to a sway back. On a daily basis, walking and running occur more than many other physical activities. Your physic ability can be impacted by your l vel and method of m tion. So times, the way you mov migh be th reas n you have p in, and physical therapy can help you change it. Runn ng is as natural as breathing. The m tio in olves many body parts interactin ogether such as your six weight bearing joints (ankles, knees, and hips). If th se joints are not in good alig ment, you might be at risk for structur l pai . One minor running e ror r peated many times can do an incredible amount of damage to your back, muscles, nerves and joints. This could ventu lly cause pai and arthritis. Of en, the cause of back pain is poor strength -- spe ifically, weak abdominal muscles. The pelvis is held in place by numerous muscles, including the abdominals, hamstrings, glute ls and hip flexors. An imbalance or w akness in th se muscles can lead to pelvic misalig ment, causing the pelvis o tilt forward or b ckward. Forward tilt of the pelvis leads to sway back.

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PATIENT SUCCESS SPOTLIGHT

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“I have been going to OrthoSports for over 3 years for all of my physical therapy needs. I have had neck, back and knee issues at different times. They have been able to help me work out the issues in a short period of time. My back was very painful and nothing helped me except PT. They helped me move again pain-free.” - Chris G. 2 1 9 6 5 1 8 6 5 7 3 8 5 1

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