If you have a physically demanding job, you run the risk of acute low back pain. For example, in the health care industry, nurses have a high rate of back pain from manually lifting patients. When you bend the wrong way or lift a heavy item improperly, the muscles around your lumbar spine can spasm, or temporarily contract, and cause back pain. Take a look at how a chiropractor can help you relieve this kind of pain and how to prevent future occurrences so that you can perform your job without issues. 

How Can a Chiropractor Help?

If you've hurt your back, you don't want to push through the pain and risk further injury. You'll want to apply ice, take over-the-counter-medications for pain if needed, and rest. You'll want to set up an appointment with your doctor and chiropractor so that you can resolve the issue and get back to work. 

When people throw out their backs, they may experience muscle guarding. In an attempt to splint an injured area, your body can cause intense muscle contractions, or guarding, to minimize motion. Unfortunately, too much muscle guarding can cause swelling, pain, and tenderness. A chiropractor can help relieve muscle guarding by massaging tense muscles and by performing manual adjustments. During manual adjustments, your chiropractor will apply pressure to vertebrae to relieve any compressed nerves that may have resulted from the muscle guarding.

Your chiropractor might use a flexion-distraction table during adjustments. These tables have different segments that will move with the area that your doctor is adjusting. The flexion-distraction table can decompress vertebrae and reduce pressure on your spinal nerves and discs.

How Can You Prevent Future Incidences?

If your doctor gives you the go-ahead, it can actually be a good idea to do mild exercises and stretches to reduce spasms and keep your range of motion. Once you are fully healed, you may want to look into strength training, as people can throw their backs out more easily if their muscle groups are weak or imbalanced.

To prevent future incidences of back pain, consider how you are lifting heavy objects at work. Your feet should be shoulder-width apart and your back should be straight. You shouldn't be bending over to lift; let your legs support the brunt of the impact. If an item is too heavy, ask for help or consider other supportive methods, like slings or machinery, that can carry the loads.

Ask your chiropractor to set you up with a back brace. A back brace isn't supposed to replace proper lifting form, but it provides stability, encourages good posture, and better distributes forces as you lift.

Lastly, if you keep experiencing spasms and are worried that you are developing chronic back pain, be sure to visit your chiropractor for regular adjustments. One study found that chiropractic manipulations along with exercise tended to improve back function and reduce future occurrences.

Reach out to a chiropractor today for more details about back pain chiropractic treatment.