Back & Neck Pain
Back and neck pain will affect most of us at some point in our lives and in severe cases it can be debilitating, inhibiting all movement due to pain. Sometimes the cause of back pain is obvious, such as an injury at work or whilst playing sports. However, with peoples increasing sedentary lifestyles back pain often comes on gradually as a dull ache that may worsen over time. It may affect any part of the spine from the neck to pelvis and could involve any of the supporting ligaments, tendons or muscles.
Symptoms of back pain vary greatly depending on the cause of injury and the existing level of the health. Some of the general symptoms of Back or Neck pain may include;
- Pain varying from the sharp pain of sciatica to a generalised dull ache.
- Stiffness, usually worse after long periods of remaining still, especially on awaking in the morning.
- Tenderness over the affected area when pressed.
- Unusual pressure on the nerves from swelling or bone and muscle impingement can cause altered sensation, such as numbness or tingling in the surrounding tissues.
- You may have referred pain down one of your limbs from a nerve impinged in the back or neck.
- Localised swelling may be present at the site of pain.
- Back and neck pain typically worsen during activity and eases at rest.
- Muscle spasms may occur as the back tries to protect against further damage.
Most back pain will resolve itself eventually, but may take weeks or even months depending on the original cause and the tissues damaged. Intervention from one of our experienced Osteopaths or physiotherapists can help alleviate your painful symptoms and facilitate your confident return to normal activities in the quickest possible time. If the cause of your back and neck pain stems from another part of the body, common to postural issues and biomechanical abnormalities, the therapist may need to begin therapy on that area first. Some of the treatment techniques used may include;
- Heat treatments to increase tissues extensibility and relieve pain.
- Soft tissue massage to release tension, loosen muscles.
- Activity modification advice to help recovery and avoid re-injury during work or sports.
- Postural advice to relieve pain and reduce injury risk.
- Strengthening exercises to improve joint stability, particularly during intense activity.
- Electrotherapy to reduce painful symptoms.
- Spinal mobilisations, to relive pressure, reduce tension and release impingements.
- Progressive exercise plan for self-management.
Your therapist will treat your symptoms giving you relief from pain and stiffness, then develop a personalised exercise plan to improve your functional recovery and gently strengthen your core muscles to reduce the future risk of injury.
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I didn't actually choose to see Nick - I was sent to him by my exasperated personal trainer, and now I can't thank her enough! Five weeks before the London Marathon I developed a pain in one of my glutes and did what any self-respecting idiot would do - ran on it until it was so bad it hurt just to walk, and the months of training seemed like they'd been for nothing.
Nick is wonderful. He's very professional and thorough and he has a naturally calming manner that will put you at ease. He also clearly knows his stuff - in our first session he quickly identified my problem (piriformis) explained it in terms I could understand (!) and gave me exercises to speed up recovery.
I had three more sessions and they were well worth it. As well as treating the injury he also assessed my running style for any underlying issues and correctly identified previous injury sites. With his help I was able to quickly get back into training and, by some miracle, a week before the marathon I was pain free.
I joked that, as well as fixing my injury, I expected Nick to make me run faster. Well, maybe... Just maybe... The man's a magician! I'm delighted to say I ran a pb, clocked my first sub-3 hour marathon and came 46th out of all the ladies. Thank you Nick! I cannot recommend him enough.- Ros P
A big thank you to Elaine (osteopath) at Nick Castle Osteopathy & Sports Medicine Clinics - after just 2 sessions she managed to work out some major aches and pains I'd been having daily, for over 6 months. I plan on seeing her on a regular basis to prevent any future problems. Thanks again!- Priti S
I have had 2 sports massages with Nick, one in Kensington and one in Amersham. Nick is a very approachable therapist, who spends time building a picture of the type of sports you do and the injuries you have. I have found Nick's techniques to really help improve my performance.- Jane B