Acupuncture for Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain is a common disorder, affecting around one-third of the UK adult population each year. Around 20% of people with low back pain (that is, 1 in 15 of the population) will consult their GP about it.
Acupuncture and pain
Many patients have benefited from treatment with acupuncture which has a reliable reputation for treating many different painful conditions. There is increasing research evidence to support their experiences.
The combination of patients’ experience and clinical evidence also supports the use of acupuncture for treating persistent or recurrent lower back pain.
Chinese medicine looks at your illness ‘holistically’, that is, in the context of your whole life.
How you live your life, the food you eat, the work you do, the stress you are under, all these are considered to be as important as your symptoms and what is going on in your body to cause these symptoms. These things affect your body in subtle yet powerful ways, upsetting the normal flow of ‘energy’ and causing discomfort.
By identifying what elements are influencing your energetic flow, the acupuncturist can set about remedying the anomalies, partly with treatment, but also with guidance and advice.
Treating the underlying problem
Traditional acupuncture is effective because the treatment is designed to tackle the underlying ‘energetic’ disturbance that causes the lower back pain. Typically, needles are inserted in the lumbar area, the upper and lower leg, and the feet.
In addition, as has been mentioned already, it is important to identify any predisposing factors, such as poor posture or stress.
As the symptoms improve, you can begin to take control and manage these predisposing factors so that they have less effect, your back being stronger and more resilient.
A strategy for prevention
While acupuncture is helpful in dealing with the symptoms of low back pain, management of the factors involved in inducing low back pain in the first place can be important in prevention. Many people have a past history of sports or work related injury which predisposes them to low back pain. However, attention to posture, addressing work related issues (such as sitting for long periods in one postition), relaxation techniques for stress reduction, appropriate exercise regimes and techniques for 'pacing yourself', can all have a significant effect. Where any or all of these are identified as relevant factors in your low back pain, managing them can become part of a programme of treatment and can have long term benefits.
Lower Back Pain
Traditional Acupuncture and back pain.
Acupuncture and lower back pain.