Back Pain

The majority of back pain surfers usually experience either a stiff and achy pain or a stabbing pain.


Constant Stiff and Achy Pain

This pain tends to become worse while sitting or standing for long durations of time. Exercise will bring relief, but only temporarily. This pain is easy to ignore but it must be treated. It is important to understand the anatomy in order to know why you are having back pain. The back contains erector spine muscles that branch up and out. The arms and legs also attach to the back. In order to feel healthy and strong there needs to be a balance between the erector spine muscles and those that attach to the arms and legs. Unfortunately, when we do certain activities repetitively an imbalance occurs causing a constant stiff and achy pain. See below to learn common activities that cause muscle imbalances.


Sitting causes several muscles to become out of balance because the hips are flexed, the spine is slouching forward, and the knees are bent. The prolonged bending of these joints shortens these muscles causing them to stiffen in that flexed position. The tension in these muscles will cause aches. Exercise can be utilized to ease the pain. Most people exercise to improve their appearance or lose weight but the biggest benefit is improving muscle health. We recommend 4-8 visits so we can work out the muscle tension so the muscles will have a decrease in injury. The muscles that tighten are the hip flexors, and knee flexors. The muscles that become rigid from the lack of use are the muscles in the back and the pelvis. Manipulation loosens these muscles and then the massage completes the muscle relaxation. The two forms of treatment work together to deliver quick and lasting relief to lower back pain. If untreated the muscles will hold on to that tension and continue to carry on as they have due to muscle memory.


Bartenders, servers, teachers, and sales associates all must stand for prolonged periods of time. The muscles known to tense up are the hamstrings, lumbar erector spinae, and quadratus lumborum. Shoes that have a higher heel than the forefoot causes the lower back to arch forward, which causes stress on the lumbar joints and tightens up the erector spinae muscles. Treatment is the same as for sitting but the massage is focused on these tense muscles. Proper shoes to align the spine and promote muscle balance is a good way to help prevent the tension of these muscles.


Sudden and Stabbing Pain

The sudden and stabbing pain is less common, but tends to be more severe. However, it usually does not last as long as the constant stiff and achy pain. Sudden and stabbing pain usually occurs when there is some stiffness in the muscles of the spine already but then someone does something that requires a forceful contraction of the muscles. For example, bending over to pick something off the ground is the most common scenario that causes this pain. This causes the muscle to go into spasm which will cause severe pain and will lock the back up.

Over the new few days the surrounding muscles will become more tense. This may cause a pain to radiate up the back or a down a leg. This is a critical time to seek treatment because the back manipulation and massage therapy will help loosen the back and relieve the muscle tension. This will decrease your pain tremendously and allow for more free movement. If this is left untreated, this condition could develop into a constant stiff and achy pain that many never go away, also causing similar flare ups for years to come.

Cheatle Chiropractic looks at the cause of the pain and then uses manipulation and massage therapy to treat this mechanical condition, which can relieve many back pain sufferers.