Frequently Asked Questions
Does core strength improve lower back pain?
Core strength can improve lower back pain. It is best not to start core exercises during a low back pain flare-up. Your doctor of chiropractic is trained to recognize the appropriate time to introduce core exercises.
Can a weak core cause low back pain?
A weak core can contribute to the onset of low back pain. The core muscles help protect the joints and ligaments of the low back. If the core muscles are weak, then the low back joints and ligaments are forced to work harder. This can lead to damage in the low back which can cause low back pain.
How do you strengthen your core for lower back pain?
The best way to strengthen your core muscles is, to begin with, low-impact core training. Exercises like plank and crunches are a great way to begin training core muscles. If you’ve never done core exercises, it is best to be evaluated by a doctor of chiropractic so they can help guide you.
How do you know if back pain is muscle or disc?
Back pain has different causes. Usually, a muscle problem, referred to as a strain, is common after lifting improperly or repetitive use. These low back strains are usually found on one side of the low back. Disc problems can present with acute low back pain symptoms and can sometimes cause radiating pain into the thigh, calf, and foot of either side of the body.
How do you fix a lower back disc problem?
Lower back disc problems take time to heal. Regular chiropractic care is essential for healing low back discs. Discs require proper movement in order to get nutrition. If the joints in your low back are stuck, that lack of motion will decrease nutrition to the discs, making them harder to heal.
Does walking strengthen your core?
Walking can help build core strength, but only to a point. Proper core exercises are essential to build core strength. Walking in conjunction with daily core exercises would be a great routine to help with low back pain.
Is Plank good for lower back pain?
Plank exercises can help with low back pain. It is important to know when to start doing core exercises. If you have an acute low back pain flare-up, it is best to wait on starting core exercises until the flare-up has subsided.
Hello everyone, I'm Dr. Aaron Seaton with The Chiropractic Place here in Redding, California. Today, I wanted to talk to you guys a little bit about core strength and its effect on low back pain. So, the core is really the abdominal muscles, and we also have muscles on the sides here called our bleak muscles, and we have muscles in our back, like paraspinal muscles, multifidus muscles that help stabilize and make this foundation that we call our core, that helps stabilize the spine. Now, it's important to first understand how our core works so people understand why it's so important. Your core muscles are actually wired to fire and contract before you move any of your legs, your arms, any time you make a movement. Your core is designed to be engaged prior to you even moving your arm or your leg. So, it's very important that your core works properly, because it stabilizes your spine any time you go for a run or go to do like a... Shoot a hoop or lift the weight, any time you do any of that stuff, the core has to fire first to protect you. So, that's why that is so important because it's protecting that spine.
So, if you have a weak core, those muscles that aren't supposed to be firing are not doing their job, you're gonna start to put more work for your joints and your ligaments which hold your bones together. Now, what that means is, if the core remains weak, especially in the low back, that the discs and the ligaments and the joints in the low back are going to have to take more of the load any time you're doing something. If you work in the trades and you're lifting a lot and your core muscles are weak, your low back is gonna be taking a lot of that, and those joints, those discs, those can get injured over time and cause lots of pain down the road. So, this is why it's so important to keep a strong core to protect that type of wear and tear, that can add up over time. And when you're doing it, you might not even feel that damage taking place, but that damage will build up over time and eventually leave you in lots of pain and possibly having degenerative disc problems, disc herniations, pinched nerves in your low back and low back pain. So, if we can avoid that by keeping that core strong, that's a great thing.
The other thing that we typically see patients who are having a weak core, sometimes they present with some weight issues and the need to bring that weight down, because let's say you have a weak core and you're 20, 30 pounds overweight. Well, the core muscles are weak, so the joints and the bones in the low back are already having to deal with more stress, because the core muscles aren't protecting them, and then on top of that, we're putting more weight on to those structures and compressing those joints even more. So, it's a lose-lose situation for the joints in your low back, if we have a weak core and we have some weight we need to lose. So, we always like to talk to our patients about, "Hey, if there's weight loss needed, there are several plans out there that work for people," but getting that weight down, getting that pressure off of your low back is very helpful and also starting to strengthen those core muscles, because if we don't, the joints and the ligaments are dealing with all of that and they will wear out because they are not designed to do that for years and years on end.
Number four, the chiropractic care is very helpful for people with low back pain who might be dealing with core issues, because what we can help do is start getting patients out of pain so that they have a better quality of life, and they would be more motivated and a lot more comfortable when doing their core exercises or when doing certain things to help with some weight loss. It's very important because the chiropractor, especially in our office, we can take digital x-rays in my office and look at the low back and look at those joints, look at those disks and see, is there any damage in here? Is there any concerns we have? And we can create a unique care plan for that patient and help guide them and tell them when is it safe to start exercising and doing these other things? But first and foremost, if you're in a massive amount of low back pain, we don't wanna start doing core exercises right out of the gate, that's usually counter-productive, we wanna get that patient out of pain, figure out first what's causing it, start getting them better, and then we can start introducing some core strengthening exercises, maybe some weight loss stuff to really help fix the problem of what keeps causing that low back pain.
So, if you have any questions about this, hopefully this makes sense, hopefully you understand why the core is so vital. It's there to help protect you, and you need to have a strong core throughout your life, it does so many things to protect your low back, your organs, all kinds of things. So, it's important if you need any help with this, any help with your low back issues and questions about this, give our office a call. I'm Dr. Aaron Seaton with The Chiropractic Place.
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