Had low back pain forever, or just too long? Is it getting progressively worse – or not improving? Have you seen a host of practitioners but no real change to show for all your time and money?
“Functional hallux limitus is a frequent condition that clinicians may overlook when examining patients with complaints that are not limited to their feet, for they can also present other symptoms such as hip, knee and lower-back pain.”
Unresolved or recurring low back pain is the bane of many people’s lives.
For some it is constant nagging pain throughout the day, for others they are one wrong movement away from setting it off, and then there are those who dread getting up from beds, chairs or car seats because they know they are going to be stiff and have trouble standing up.
Recurrent low back pain leads people to seeing a lot of different practitioners chasing long term relief. It seems to get better for a while with many forms of treatment, but it just never seems to maintain itself.
I know like many you’re probably hoping that it will eventually heal and resolve by itself with time. That’s just denying the reality of the majority of back pain. A reality that often leads to increasing problems, and eventually degeneration.
The reality is low back pain doesn’t only come from your problems in your low back. We are complex beings and in addition to the low back itself, low back pain can come from other parts of our body both above and below the low back area.
One area almost completely ignored in the treatment of low back is the feet and particularly the big toe.
One common presentation we see is called functional hallux limitis. This relates to the big toe and is a loss of function at the big toe joint – the big toe doesn’t bend up and down as it should.
The loss of function at the big toe results in altered movement of the big toe and foot resulting in compensation within foot biomechanics.
Strangely enough (sic), the foot is connected to the leg, and so altered foot movements can have an upstream effect on the whole kinematic chain including the knee, hip and low back.
The good news is, as the name suggests, in the early stages this is a functional problem. That means, if you get the correct treatment, the functional loss that initiated this process can be restored.
Do you want to know my top tips to identify if your big toe could be classified as a functional hallux limitis? If so, then read below. 👇👇👇
Here are my top tips to see if your big toe is problematic and a possible component of your low back pain:
- Look at your feet – does the big toe bend away from the other foot or do you have a bony lump on the big toe that may hurt when it rubs against your shoe?
- Pain – is there tenderness at the top of the big toe joint that worsens with walking or other activities that bend the joint?
- Do you have trouble flexing your big toe?
- Do you have a callus on the sole of your foot? Altered foot biomechanics will cause callous formation.
Do you know that definition of insanity is the doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result? Does this encapsulate the treatment approach to your low back pain?
If any of the symptoms described above sound like you, this maybe the missing puzzle in your long-term low back pain!
If you would like to book an appointment to see how we can help you or you’d just like to chat to someone about your low back and feet, click the chat button or give us a call today on 9318 7758 and we’ll organise a time to see what our team might be able to do to help you