Back pain is without doubt the most common pain around the world….
A recent Scandinavian study showed that only 20% of the population could spend a whole year without a painful episode. Also, the risk of developing neck pain was 4 times more common in office workers. Bad neck posture, especially bending down to text on phones or type into your laptop, is to blame for the neck discomfort. Staying in a prolonged seated position, repetitive work, and simple mental tiredness are, among others, some of the factors that could start a real problem.
Back pain is the main cause of absenteeism and performance’s reduction for companies, however if you have back pain, the good news is that there is lots you can do! Also, tips below will allow you to prevent and treat neck and back pain:
First tip: Short Exercise To Prevent Back Pain
This exercise is great for back pain. It is inspired by the yoga postures, the “chair pose” and “tree pose”; it releases the tensions and stretches muscles. You can practice it everywhere: at your office, home or even at the airport and as often as possible. Well – maybe not the airport or you may be arrested!
Side bending to both sides: this stretches the muscles on each side of your low back spine.
- Start sitting on your office chair and lift both your arms to join the palms of your hands just on top of your head. You can close your eyes.
- From there, take a deep breath in and as you start breathing out, slowly bend your upper body towards the right(aim at bringing your right shoulder towards the floor), until you start to feel some tension in the opposite (left) low back area. Be careful here: if you start to feel pain, and not tension, it means you went too far. Slightly come back towards the initial neutral position, until you start feeling tension instead of pain.
- Keep this position for 15 to 20 seconds. Breathe!
- Go back to initial position while breathing in, in a very gentle and controlled way.
- Rest for 5 to 6 seconds then repeat 1 through 3. towards the left side. Do 3 repetitions on each side.
Tips To Prevent And Treat Neck And Back Pain
Every osteopath will tell you there are simple things that can prevent back pain:
- In case of sudden pain, rest for no more than one or two days off. After 48 hours, it is best to mobilize your back by returning to non-sporting activities, like walking, working or shopping.
- Do sports that both stretch as well as strengthen the back and abdominal muscles, such as Pilates, stretching swimming or gentle yoga. These sports will be particularly effective avoiding a relapse.
- Manage stress, sleep well and improve posture at the office. Avoid staying in the same position for too long. You need to remember to get up from your desk every hour to move around! Not easy to remember this when we are focused on work! These small details in everyday life can help to prevent the pain from becoming chronic.
Handling Back Pain Thanks To Osteopathy
Having treated a large number of patients in different countries, I realize how universal back pain is. Sportsmen, sportswomen or sedentary persons, adults or children, we have all experienced lumbago, a stiff neck or sciatica.
Osteopathy is a diagnostic and therapeutic approach that targets various anatomical structures (joints, ligaments, muscles, fascia…) that can limit the body in its normal physiological functioning. The treatment uses various and adapted manual techniques, including cranial and visceral approaches.
Personalised treatment: despite popular belief, Osteopathy does not only use vertebral manipulation (what people associate with a “popping” sound). There is a broad range of techniques, which are systematically adapted to the patient, his needs and his condition.
Long term benefits: Osteopathy considers the body as a whole, and does not solely treat the symptoms (such as pain), but goes further to look after the cause (such as tendinitis, joint problems). Osteopathy not only treats acute pain but also older or poorly-treated injuries that are chronic.
Treatment plan: In case of typical acute crises like lumbago, stiff neck or sciatica pain, the treatment is generally short: about three sessions on average. For a chronic problem (pain for more than three consecutive months), the treatment may be longer; the purpose of each session is to gradually space out the painful episodes.
You can also consult an osteopath in a preventive way (sports event or competitions to come).
Newborns And Children
Your Osteopath can help your child with nervous tears, agitation, breastfeeding issues, regurgitation, protruding abdomen, torticollis, plagiocephaly (flat head syndrome), sleep disorders, constipation, colic…
The arrival of a baby into the world is not always simple. Unusually short or long childbirth, induced labour, caesarean delivery, breech/shoulder/face presentation, and abnormal fetal position in the uterus are all common conditions during childbirth.
The body of the baby is not always able to recover quickly from these troubles.
An Osteopath can treat an infant within the first few weeks after delivery. During this time, the baby’s body is very reactive and adaptable and responds to the treatment extremely well. Remember that the earlier the treatment, the higher the chance of success. The approach of the Osteopath is extremely gentle and does not use manipulative techniques during this time.
Pregnancy And Osteopathy
When it comes to pregnant woman, Osteopathy helps to relieve common disorders related to pregnancy while ensuring the safety of the mother and the foetus. Osteopathy can successfully help with back pain, pubic and perineal pain, sciatica, nausea, acid reflux, fertility problems, dyspareunia (painful intercourse), and coccydinia (tail bone pain).