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Naturopathic Medicine Blog

Low Back Pain Toronto

Posted Jun 21st, 2020 in Acupuncture, Naturopathic Medicine, News, Tips

Low Back Pain Toronto

The magnitude of the problem

According to the Canadian Chiropractic Association, 5 in 10 Canadians suffer from low back pain. Low back pain in Toronto is a rising health problem. Up to 85% of working people would have Low Back pain at one point during their lifetime. https://www.chiropractic.ca/blog/canadas-low-back-pain-epidemic

Even, some healthcare providers consider Low Backpain as  an epidemic given the rising numbers of those who have had this problem in the last few years in Toronto

Why does someone have Low Backpain?

Several reasons cause Low Backpain such as

·         Disc Prolapse / Herniation

·         Muscle Spasm

·         Ligament sprain

·         Overweight/Obesity

·         Sedentary life/ lack of exercise

·         Accidents/ Trauma

·         Poor Posture

·         Pregnancy

·         Large Uterine Fibroids

·         Cancer

How to identify the reason(s) for low back pain?

The best way to reach the diagnosis of Low Backpain is to discuss with your Healthcare Provider the details of your problem such as the quality of pain ( dull aching/ sharp/throbbing or shooting pains), what triggers the pain ( movement/ carrying heavy stuff/coughing or straining, etc) whether the pain is located at the back only or refers to the hips/thighs, what makes the pain better (such as rest/change in position or taking pain killers, etc).

Physical examination by the Healthcare provider can help to reach the diagnosis by observing the gait of the patient, how flexible are his/her back muscles, range of motion, and straight leg elevation test.

Most of the time, the diagnosis of low back pain can be achieved by proper history taking and physical examination. Referral to radiological services (such as doing an MRI or CT scan spine) can be of help sometimes, especially if the patient presents with Red Flag signs and symptoms that include but are not limited to loss of sensation around the saddle area or down the legs or feet and any urinary or rectal sphincter incontinence issues.

How to treat low back pain?

The treatment of low back pain should be supervised by a qualified healthcare provider, and not be attempted by simple measures such as rest or painkillers only. Why people should seek the help of Healthcare providers? This is simply because Low Back pain is not a simple problem as many people think, as mentioned before, it could be due to problems related to muscles, ligaments or disc herniation, so calming down the pain with rest and or painkillers would not solve the root cause of the problem and only aggravates the problem in the future after the effect of the pain killer is gone.

So, from the patient’s perspective, the rest and painkillers are only temporary measures until the proper healthcare provider is consulted.

Treatment Options by the Healthcare Provider  

·         Acupuncture: Acupuncture is a very well-established means of treating the low back pain. According to the American Family Physician Journal (AAFP), Michael Devitt Published an article in this Journal on May 21st, 2018 about the impact of Acupuncture on Low Back pain https://www.aafp.org/news/health-of-the-public/20180521acupuncture.html 

-          Devitt stressed the significance of the low back pain problem in the states and mentioned that affects Millions of Americans every year with a huge impact on the quality of life and economy of the country due to the impact of this problem on work and physical performance. He highlighted the significance of Acupuncture in treating the lower Backpain based on an extensive Meta-Analysis Database Research in the Pain Journal that showcases the effectiveness of Acupuncture in relieving Low pain as compared to the other measures for lowing the Backpain intensity and also maintaining the longevity of Pain-free periods after starting the acupuncture treatments.

-          Acupuncture can be given either using the Acupuncture needles only or adding an electric stimulation to the needles that in many cases makes it more effective in treating the low back pain.

-          Acupuncture point locations, duration of the single treatment, and the overall duration of Acupuncture are all determined by your Healthcare Provider.

·         Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (PEMF): This is a low energy safe radiation therapy that helps to improve the blood flow to the affected areas of muscle and joint pains and can be used alone or with Acupuncture to achieve better results. The use of PEMF with or without Acupuncture depends on the extent and magnitude of the Low Back P.ain

·         Other Natural Therapies for Low Backpain: Anti-inflammatory herbs and minerals can help as well to improve the pain and stiffness of Low Backpain such as the Omega 3 Fish oil, Curcumin, and other similar herbs.

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