Low back pain is estimated to affect 90% of the population at some point in their lives. Low back pain has different causes, which leads to different experiences of pain. Some causes of low back pain derive from pregnancy, falling, a direct blow, pulling, coughing, sneezing, or having a short leg. Two common types of low back injuries are disc injury or facet joint injury. Remembering the difference may change your approach to the low back.
A disc injury is most often caused by bending, lifting and twisting. A client often feels some sensation as they were lifting, though the onset of pain usually occurs one to two days later. The disc injury will radiate pain and/or numbness down the leg and be very intense. It is essential your client see their physician prior to addressing this injury.
A facet joint injury is also often caused by bending, lifting and twisting; however, the onset of pain is immediate! A client usually feels severe pain and is unable to stand up. In the instance of a facet joint injury, the ligaments have been strained, rather than the disc being displaced or damaged. Facet joint injuries are easier to address and yield more benefit with massage therapy than disc injuries.
Consider working with the following muscles when helping heal a low back injury: Gluteus Medius, Gluteus Maximus, Quadratus Lumborum, Piriformis, Rectus Abdominus, Psoas, Iliacus, Erector Spinae.
It has been our experience that those with low back injuries heal faster when they feel supported. Answer the question- What will support me? Feeling and allowing support is paramount to maintaining a healthy alignment in the spine, a clear mind, and a happy heart.
“Healing may not be so much about getting better, as about letting go of everything that isn’t you – all of the expectations, all of the beliefs – and becoming who you are.”
– Rachel Naomi Remen