Sacroiliac Joint (SIJ) Pain
Possible causes for low back pain can be endless, and as a patient you may have seen a number of different clinicians providing different diagnoses as to what is causing your low back pain. Many low back pain cases I see as a Chiropractor will be caused by the sacroiliac joint (SIJ). This joint, which basically connects your spine to your pelvis, assists the body with every-day movements such as walking, bending forward or hip flexion when walking or running.
SIJ pain can be caused by twisting at an awkward angle (usually combined with bending forward), leaning to one side when sat on the sofa for a long period of time or missing a step when descending the stairs. Anyone can suffer from this common condition, including desk workers, athletes or during pregnancy when a hormone called relaxin causes the pelvic ligaments to relax.
In many cases, this joint when restricted does not cause pain initially but over time muscle tension can build after shifting our weight to the other side to compensate for the lack of movement in the joint that has now become irritated. This can lead to irritation of the sciatic nerve, leading to pain radiating down the legs and around the hips.
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When a patient presents with this complaint in the clinic, manipulation of the restricted joint is really effective in promoting more movement and less pain in the affected joint. Manipulation involves a safe, often gentle impulse encouraging movement in the joint, which can be combined with soft tissue massage to free up the surrounding area. The immediate results are usually fantastic, with further follow up treatments providing a permanent basis for the joint to continue moving freely and effectively, as well as reducing the increased muscle tone. In addition to the hands-on manipulation, strengthening exercises and lifestyle advice are provided to prevent these problems reoccurring.
Watch this video explaining how a manipulation is carried out to the lumbar spine or SIJ. Below that is a great strengthening exercise for the gluts to support the SIJ.
Physioimpulse Chartered Physiotherapists