Is the cause of your low back pain a mystery? You are not alone. In fact, 9 out of 10 patients do not know the primary cause of their back pain. The problem is that most people seek treatment after they have started experiencing symptoms. While we know this seems like a logical decision, there IS a better way.
The key to understanding and preventing your back pain is to see a physical therapist PRIOR to experiencing symptoms. You may be asking yourself, "If I don't have back pain, why would I take the time to see someone for it?" For starters, physical therapists are trained to recognize the physical dysfunctions that may LEAD to back pain. Secondly, 8 out of 10 Americans suffer from back pain at some point in their life, so it's very likely that YOU too, will experience low back pain. Lastly, it will take much less time (and money) to PREVENT your back pain than it will trying to FIX it after the fact.
Seeing a physical therapist on a yearly basis is one of the most effective ways to prevent back pain from occurring. Doesn't that sound like a better alternative?
Now that you understand the importance of seeing a physical therapist for prevention of low back pain, you may be wondering what to expect. On your first visit, your physical therapist will collect a complete picture of your medical history. On future visits, it will be important to update the therapist on any changes over the past year but you will not need to go through your entire medical history again. Your PT will also discuss your concerns, questions and goals as you work together to create a long-term plan for you to stay active and healthy.
Next, your physical therapist will perform an examination using a variety of tests and measures including a movement assessment. They will evaluate your strength, core stability, range of motion, flexibility and movement quality to identify imbalances in the body that may lead to pain and dysfunction if not addressed.
Your PT will be able to identify changes from year to year and inform you of your risks for low back pain as well as any other musculoskeletal conditions that may arise. If a problem is identified early enough, your therapist is well equipped to discuss preventative measures and intervene BEFORE symptoms begin to occur.
Ant THAT is how you identify the root cause of your back pain and derail issues before they even begin!