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"The Importance of Movement for Back Pain: Why Osteopaths Recommend Staying Active"

Lower back pain and sciatica

Osteopaths often advise individuals suffering from back pain to keep moving for several reasons:

  • Promotes Blood Flow: Gentle movement can help increase blood flow to the affected area, which can aid in the healing process by delivering essential nutrients and oxygen to the tissues. Improved circulation can also help reduce inflammation.

  • Prevents Stiffness: Prolonged immobility can lead to stiffness and decreased flexibility, which may exacerbate back pain. Gentle movement helps prevent stiffness and maintains joint mobility.

  • Muscle Activation and Support: Controlled movement can help activate and strengthen the muscles surrounding the spine, providing better support and stability to the affected area. Weak muscles can contribute to back pain, so gentle exercises can help address this issue.

  • Psychological Benefits: Being active, even in small ways, can have positive psychological effects, such as reducing stress and improving mood. Chronic pain can take a toll on mental well-being, and staying active can help alleviate some of these negative effects.

  • Encourages Healing: While rest is important for acute back pain, prolonged bed rest is generally not recommended as it can lead to muscle weakness and further problems. Controlled movement can encourage healing and prevent deconditioning without exacerbating the underlying issue.

It's important to note that the type and intensity of movement recommended will vary depending on the individual's specific condition and the severity of their back pain. Osteopaths can provide personalised recommendations and guidance on appropriate exercises and activities tailored to each person's needs and limitations. Additionally, it's essential to listen to your body and avoid activities that worsen pain or discomfort.


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