Albany Chiropractor

Back Pain TreatmentAlbany, OR

Chiropractors offer back pain treatment that employs hands-on techniques to help people overcome this common and often debilitating pain. Our chiropractic team works with patients to discover the source of their back pain. Then, we develop a holistic and personalized treatment plan to help them find relief.

Treatment for back pain is available at Better Pain Solutions in Albany and the surrounding area. Learn how a chiropractic approach to treating back pain could help you start feeling like yourself again. Call our office at (541) 249-7317 to schedule an appointment.

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    Understanding Back Pain

    Nearly everyone will deal with some form of back pain eventually. Back pain is one of the most common reasons people seek medical attention. According to WebMD, millions of Americans struggle with back pain, which is the leading cause of disability in those younger than 45. Back pain is one of the most common medical problems and is estimated to affect 8 out of 10 people at some point in life.

    The back is a large area with many moving parts vulnerable to strain and injury. Physical condition, posture, lifestyle, work habits, and injury can all contribute to back pain. It tends to become more common as people age, compounded by the fact that so many Americans lead a sedentary lifestyle. Improper lifting and posture can also contribute to many people’s back pain.

    Pain can range from a dull ache to an intense burning or stabbing sensation and can vary in intensity from mild to debilitating. Pain can radiate down a person’s legs or arms and worsen when bending or making certain movements. Back pain can cause numbness, stiffness, or weakness and can be either chronic or acute.

    Types of Back Pain a Chiropractor Can Treat

    Back pain can be challenging to diagnose and treat because it can have many different causes. Some back pain does not even stem from the back muscles or spine. Therefore, it is crucial patients describe the quality, intensity, location, and frequency of pain to help the practitioner determine the right treatment. Three common classifications of back pain include:

    • Axial pain: Also known as mechanical pain, this is the most common type of lower back pain. This pain is confined to one region and can be dull to sharp and constant or throbbing. Muscle strain is a common cause of axial back pain. Other causes of axial pain include disc or facet joint problems.
    • Radicular Pain: This can be tough to distinguish from referred pain. Also known as radiculopathy or sciatica, it is typically described as an electric shock-like or searing pain. This pain follows the path of a spinal nerve exiting the spinal canal. Likely causes of radicular pain include a pinched or inflamed nerve or herniated disk. In addition, this type of pain can spread below the knee.
    • Referred pain: As the name suggests, referred pain describes when the pain felt in one part of the body is caused by a problem in another part of the body. This pain tends to be dull and achy and moves around a lot. However, many people tend to feel pain in the lower back, spreading to the mid-back, hips, and thighs. It is unlikely to spread below the knee. This type of pain is rarer than axial or radicular pain.

    An important thing to note about back pain, especially referred pain, is that it can signify a serious condition such as kidney or prostate problems. Therefore, it is important to first rule out more serious conditions before deciding on the right form of treatment. It helps if the patient keeps a detailed pain journal to bring with them to their initial consultation.

    What To Expect During the Initial Consultation

    The patient should allow about an hour for the initial chiropractic consultation. The practitioner will want to take a comprehensive health history because pain in the back can be a result of so many different things. Patients should prepare to share information on more than just their current symptoms. Diet, exercise, past injuries, chronic conditions, sleep and lifestyle habits, mental stress, and any medications the patient is taking are all pieces of information the chiropractor may need to help identify the source of the pain.

    In addition to the health history, the practitioner will do a physical exam and may order lab tests and X-rays to help them zero in on the source of the pain. The chiropractor will need to determine the cause of the back pain and confirm it is something they can treat before developing a treatment plan. Each treatment plan is holistic and tailored to the individual patient and may include dietary and posture advice, stretching and massage, and hands-on chiropractic treatment.

    Back Pain Treatments by a Chiropractor

    The goal of chiropractic treatment is pain relief and improved function not through drugs or surgery but by bringing the spine back into alignment and stimulating the bodies healing abilities. The two major approaches chiropractors use are spinal manipulation and spinal mobilization. Some practitioners practice both and choose whichever method is best for a patient’s particular case.

    Spinal Manipulation

    Spinal manipulation, also referred to as a chiropractic adjustment, employs short and sharp movements. It is a technique in which the practitioner uses their hands or a device to apply a controlled thrust to a joint in the spine, moving the joint further than it would move on its own. This is the older of the two approaches and is entirely controlled by the practitioner.

    Spinal Mobilization

    While the goal of spinal mobilization is similar to the goal of spinal manipulation, the approach has some key differences. The main difference being that the practitioner moves the joint slowly and stays within the normal range of movement. This is considered the gentler approach as there is no controlled thrust. A prime example of a common mobilization method is the Cox Flexion-distraction. This method adjusts vertebrae through a gentle stretch of the spine accomplished through a series of slow and repetitive rocking movements.

    Treatment may start on the first or second session, and the practitioner may use either technique or a combination of techniques over the course of several sessions. This hands-on therapy tends to work best as part of a customized treatment plan that includes massage, stretches, diet, and lifestyle advice. It is important for the patient to have a good understanding of how the practitioner works so they are comfortable with the treatment.

    Benefits and Risks of Chiropractic Care for Back Pain

    There are a number of reasons people seek out chiropractic care when they are struggling with back pain. This treatment is an excellent option for those seeking relief that does not involve prescription drugs or surgery. People have reported it improves their posture, mobility, and athletic performance. Another advantage of chiropractic care is that it tends to be holistic and aims to treat the underlying issue and not just mask the symptoms. A 2015 study found patients reported reduced pain and a high level of satisfaction with their treatment.

    Overall, chiropractic care is safe when administered by a qualified professional, and complications are rare. However, there are things to consider before undergoing chiropractic care. Those with the following conditions are advised against spinal manipulations:

    • A bone abnormality in the neck
    • A high risk of stroke
    • Cancer in the spine
    • Numbness, tingling, or loss of strength in a limb
    • Severe osteoporosis

    Also, those with bone or joint infections, bone fractures, or tumors are advised against chiropractic care.

    Not all pain can be addressed with chiropractic care. Our team gets to know a patient’s case thoroughly to make sure that chiropractic care is the right approach. Our practitioners will fully understand the patient’s medical history, lifestyle, and current symptoms to ensure the treatment plan we design for them is safe, effective, and matches their needs.

    Schedule a Visit Today

    Back pain consultations and treatments are available at our office. If you are struggling with back pain that will not go away on its own, we can help. Our team will work with you one on one to design a treatment plan that addresses the underlying cause of your back pain. Call our office at (541) 249-7317 to learn more or schedule an appointment.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Back Pain

    Will my insurance cover chiropractic care for back pain?

    Many insurance companies now include chiropractic care under services they cover. This was not always the case. It is best to check with your insurance provider to learn the specifics of your chiropractic coverage. However, you likely have some coverage.

    Should I use an ice pack or a hot pack for back pain?

    An ice pack and a hot pack can both work to ease back pain. However, it is important to know when to use each. Typically, you want to use a cold pack for pain resulting from an injury. Once the swelling and inflammation are reduced, apply the hot pack. The heat will improve flexibility and increase blood flow to the area, which aids in healing.

    Who is more likely at risk for developing back pain?

    People tend to associate back pain with aging. While that is a leading factor, many additional factors raise one’s risk of developing back pain as well, including:

    • Being overweight
    • Diseases such as cancer or arthritis
    • Having mental health issues such as depression and anxiety
    • Improper lifting techniques
    • Lack of exercise
    • Smoking

    Being open and detailed with your provider is one of the most important things you can do to discover the source or cause of your back pain. Back pain is difficult to treat since it can result from many environmental, psychological, behavioral, and genetic factors. If you have any of these risk factors, it is important you reveal them to our team in the initial consultation.

    What sort of information is helpful to bring to a chiropractic consultation?

    You should inform the practitioner of anything that might relate to your back pain. The most important things include any injuries, surgeries, medications, or chronic conditions. It is helpful to keep a record of the pain that explains the following:

    • A description of the quality of the pain (as detailed as possible)
    • How long you have had it
    • How you think it may have started
    • If the back pain is worse at certain times of the day or after certain activities
    • What seems to trigger the pain

    Lifestyle habits, athletic activity, and what you do for work are important to share because these can factor into back issues.

    Is spinal manipulation safe?

    Safety is a common concern for many people because spinal manipulation can sound intimidating. However, as long as the patient does not have any of the above-mentioned conditions and is treated by a qualified professional, spinal manipulation is safe and effective. Adverse reactions are rare. Our team makes patient safety a priority and will not recommend any treatment they feel is unsafe for the patient or makes them feel unsafe.

    Contact Us

    Better Pain Solutions is located at
    2625 Queen Ave SE
    Albany, OR 97322

    (541) 249-7317