Back pain in older adults

This week is Back Care Awareness week and the theme for this year’s campaign is Back Pain in Older Adults.

Back pain is one of the major disabling health conditions in adults aged over 60 and evidence suggests that chronic and low back pain is something that increases with age.

Everyday tasks like gardening, DIY or even bending down to put on your shoes can bring on back pain, but there’s no need to be fearful.  There is much that can be done to reduce your symptoms and for the majority, you’ll soon be returning to the activities you enjoy.

Managing back pain

The good news is that in most people, lower back pain represents a simple back sprain which can be settled by gentle and relaxed movements. 

If you are in pain, speak to one of our physiotherapists who can help to treat, manage and sometimes prevent back pain.

Myths about back pain and the facts

Myth: Moving makes back pain worse.

Fact: Moving, including twisting and bending, is essential. Stay active and gradually increase your level of activity.

Myth: Avoid exercise, especially weight training.

Fact: Research shows that continuing your regular activities and taking exercise can help you get better sooner. When appropriate, that could include using weights.

Myth: Pain means damage.

Fact: Recent research challenges this view, and modern physio helps people understand why they are in pain.

Myth: Scans show exactly what is wrong.

Fact: Sometimes they do but not always. Scans can also show changes in the spine that aren’t related to pain, causing fear that influences behaviour, making problems worse.