What is Back Pain?

Back pain can be managed well by having a holistic approach to your health incorporating exercise, manual therapy, nutrition and activity modification. At PEAK, back pain is something we see every day and are well equipped to help you get out of pain, to develop prevention strategies to minimise the chance of it returning, and set you up for success to achieve your goals.

Types of Back Pain

Lower Back Pain

Lower back pain, or your Lumbar spine, is the leading cause of what limits our activity and often leads to work absence. Your lumbar spine is made up of 5 separate vertebrae and are extremely strong and resilient structures being able to support both your lower limb and the vertebrae above them. Whilst this is a strong area of the body, pain in this area is very common, affecting all body types and all ages.

Middle Back Pain

Your mid-back, or Thoracic spine, is made up of 12 vertebrae and connects your upper and lower back. Your thoracic spine is strong and resilient and attaches to your ribs. Discomfort can be very common in this area as a result of poor posture, sleep and other very innocuous movements.

Upper Back Pain

Your upper back/neck, or your cervical spine, is made up of seven separate vertebrae which provide a great deal of range of motion for our body and are strong structures. They act to support your head as well as provide stability for your thoracic (mid-back) spine. Cervical spine discomfort can often be from innocuous movements and can lead to headaches as well as other referral pain into your face and shoulders.

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Back Pain Symptoms

Back pain symptoms will vary depending on the location of your discomfort. Some common symptoms are (but not limited to):

Cervical (Neck or upper back):

  • Limited range of motion
  • Soreness and difficulty rotating or tilting the neck to your shoulders
  • Vague headache symptoms
  • Shoulder pain
  • Arm pain
  • Jaw pain

Thoracic (mid back):

  • Chest pain
  • Pain on breathing in and/or out
  • Limited range of motion
  • Pain on coughing
  • Pain on overhead arm movements

Lumbar (low back):

  • Limited range of motion
  • Buttock pain
  • Hamstring pain
  • Pain on quick and sudden movements

Back Pain Causes

There is no definitive answer to what causes back pain. For the great majority of back pain it can be a combination of lifestyle factors, external forces on the body, poor posture, sleep habits, nutrition and many more.

Our initial goal is to determine whether your injury is a danger to your long term health which is achieved by conducting a comprehensive physical assessment. Only in rare occasions do symptoms of your back pain represent serious pathological issues. Your PEAK Practitioners are skilled in determining this and have the resources and knowledge to help you overcome your back pain.

Some common causes of back pain include:

  • Poor posture
  • Poor sleeping habits and posture
  • Increased stress
  • Lack of exercise and movement
  • Traumatic injury to the body such as motor vehicle accidents
  • Everyday activities such as bending over or lifting
  • Sporting injuries

Back Pain Assessment

A thorough clinical examination by a PEAK Practitioner combined with a detailed understanding of your history and background information will work towards diagnosing your back pain. Your PEAK Practitioner will investigate the severity of discomfort, whether there is referral to other parts of your body, age, location and previous experiences and a range of other factors which contribute to your assessment and diagnosis.

This may include looking at your range of motion testing, strength, mobility, functional movement (squatting etc.) and specific orthopedic tests which will help aim to rule out any specific pathological conditions.

Your PEAK Practitioner is committed to not only assessing your discomfort and addressing your pain, but also to work with you to prevent the pain from recurring. In some cases we may suspect that your movement patterns are contributing to your back pain, and will consider additional assessments such as a Detailed Running and Biomechanics Assessment, a Golf Assessment, or specific Strength and Conditioning assessment.

Back Pain Treatment

Physio for Back Pain

Your PEAK Physiotherapist will address the soft tissue, joints and other structural aspects of your back pain and may provide (but not limited to) Dry needling, Active Release Technique (ART) and home based exercises to help reduce your pain as quickly as possible.

Massage for Back Pain

PEAK’s Massage Therapists will address the soft tissue structures and joints that may be affecting your back pain. They may provide (but not limited to) Dry needling, Active Release Technique (ART) and home based exercises to help your pain and relieve it as quickly as possible.

Chiro for Back Pain

Our Chiropractors may use spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) as part of their treatment. This will be determined by a number of factors and will be discussed with you if there are no contraindications (things that do not lead it to be safe). Soft tissue techniques and dry needling may be applied along with home based exercises to help reduce your pain and prevent it from recurring.

Back Pain in Pregnancy

Back pain is a very common discomfort in pregnancy that is often the result of increased weight throughout the development of the fetus. At PEAK, we have experienced Women’s Health Physiotherapists who will be able to determine specific treatments and exercises that may help relieve this pain and get you through the pregnancy as pain free as possible.

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FAQs Frequently Asked Questions

Red flags that are related to your back can also often be symptoms of non-harmful episodes of back pain. Our team of Allied Health professionals are well equipped to determine whether an appropriate referral is required or we are able to help manage your pain. Bladder changes, severe pain, neurological impairment and severe visual symptoms are rare, but serious red flags that your PEAK Practitioners will investigate.

Physiotherapy is well positioned to help your back pain. Our Physiotherapists will provide a thorough physical examination, manual therapy (hands on treatment) and provide you with an individual exercise program to help you with your pain away from PEAK.

Both professions are beneficial and both are well equipped to manage your back pain. We are proud to have both professions under one roof at PEAK and will provide manual therapy that is safe and appropriate for your pain, as well as home based exercise programs. Both our Chiropractors and Physiotherapists are trained to get you moving freely and as quickly as possible and where appropriate may refer you to either profession if a particular type of treatment may be more appropriate. At PEAK we adopt a team approach and can utilise both our Physiotherapy and Chiropractic service to help remove your pain in the quickest time possible, with treatment that is tailored to you.

Our locations

Hawthorne

PEAK Hawthorne opened in 2012 and was extended and renovated in 2020. You see the same team whether we see you at Hawthorne or one of our other clinics.  Hawthorne offers private treatment rooms and a spacious exercise area incorporating the latest equipment and technology, unrestricted single level access and off-street parking. We also provide HICAPS for real-time private health claiming.

Our locations

New Farm

PEAK New Farm opened in August 2019. You see the same team whether we see you at New Farm or one of our other clinics. New Farm offers private treatment rooms and a spacious exercise area incorporating the latest equipment and technology, unrestricted single level access and off-street parking. We also provide HICAPS for real-time private health claiming.

Hawthorne

Address
5/171 Riding Road,
Hawthorne, QLD, 4171
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Opening Hours -
6 days per week
  • Monday - Friday: 6:00 am - 8:00 pm
  • Saturday: 6:00 am - 2:00 pm

To make a booking outside of business hours, please use our form by clicking here.

New Farm

Address
1/15 Lamington Street,
New Farm, QLD, 4005
Get Directions
Opening Hours -
6 days per week
  • Monday - Thursday: 2:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  • Friday - Saturday: 7:00 am - 1:00 pm

To make a booking outside of business hours, please use our form by clicking here.