When you stand up and bend backward, or when you do the cobra pose in yoga, the joints between your vertebrae slide over one another. The joints of the spine telescope over each other like the separate plates of a Japanese suit of armor.
But sometimes, instead of sliding smoothly, the vertebral joints bind or pinch.
Then you have pain, inflammation, and limited movement. Doctors call it “facet impingement syndrome.”
When facet syndrome gets bad enough, you have pain even when you’re not bending backward. Sometimes simply standing causes pain. Or lying in bed without the proper support.
What to Do About Lumbar Facet Syndrome
Chiropractic adjustments are a proven way to alleviate the symptoms of facet syndrome. That’s because a well-targeted adjustment frees the joint glide between one vertebra and its neighbor. Another valuable method for lumbar facet syndrome is lumbar flexion-distraction.
But adjustments and decompression may not be the entire answer. You may also need to
• apply ice to the affected area to control inflammation
• perform proper stretches for the hip flexors
• learn the principles of proper abdominal support – and use them!
• change your chair at work – and improve your sitting posture
• develop strength of the low back muscles
• avoid wearing certain shoes
• make other changes as recommended by your doctor.