Do Inversion Tables Work For Lower Back Pain?

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Do Inversion Tables Work For Lower Back Pain?



Low back pain varies in intensity, from a dull one that develops gradually into sharp and persistent pain. Unfortunately, it is likely that almost everyone will experience back pain at some point in life. The pain may also spread downward into the gluts and sometimes to the legs.

The primary cause of back pain is muscle strain due to robust manual labor, lifting heavy loads occasionally, sleeping in strenuous positions, and bending into awkward poses, standing in one position for so long or through acts of violent force.


These may be general causes. However, other factors have been known to contribute to lower back pain. They may be compressions in the nerve system (e.g., pinched nerve), or degenerative spinal disorders which include:

Herniated disc. A case where one or more than two spinal disc bulges outward due to the soft interior matter escaping through the disc’s protective outer layer. This leads to inflammation and also a pain.

Spinal stenosis. Due to the abnormal narrowing of the nerve passageway or the spinal canal.

Spondylosis.A common degenerative spine disorder that affects the spinal cord’s facet joints. This normally leads to bone spurs.

Vertebral fractures. Caused by some form of trauma, i.e., accidents.

Spondylolisthesis. A spine disorder that occurs when one of the bones found in the lower back (lumbar vertebral) slides forward over the one below it.

Osteomyelitis. A microbial infection that develops in the bones of the spine

Spinal tumors. The abnormal growth of cells diagnosed as benign (non-cancerous mast) or malignant (cancerous mast).

Now, with these types of delicate injuries, therapies in one form or another are often applied to treat and manage them. This feature talks more about inversion tables and lower back pain.

Inversion Tables: How to use them, and who shouldn’t use them

Inversion tables offer relief to patients struggling after being diagnosed with low back pain. Inversion tables recline to help stretch the spine’s muscles and soft tissue and take pressure away from the nerves and spine disks (vertebrae) by introducing gravity (traction).

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently expanded the conditions that the only cleared Inversion table, the Teeter Inversion Table, can provide therapy for. They include muscles tension, back pain, degenerative spine-disc disease, degenerative spinal joint disease, spinal curvature, spinal stenosis, sciatica, herniated disc, muscle spasm, and facet syndrome.

The FDA expansion indicates that inversion tables are popularly becoming the mainstream therapy in treating common low and lower back problems. FDA research has also indicated that inversion tables aid in pain reduction, restoration of the normal spacing between vertebrae, and even lowering the risk for invasive spinal surgery.

Inversion therapy works similarly to dispensing toothpaste from the tube. If you apply too much pressure and more than needed toothpaste comes out, then you can just re-expand the tube by squeezing in a different plane on the tube and efficiently retract the extra toothpaste back in. However, unlike a tube of toothpaste, it is hard to predict if these effects are temporary or permanent and furthermore, it’s unclear for how long shall you use the device.

Using Inversion Tables

Spine therapists often suggest incorporating inversion therapy for 10 minutes a day for two weeks, and the incline should not be beyond 45⁰ below horizontal. In addition, having the inversion table at the point where you are upside down is ill-advised, since, overly aggressive inversion is counterproductive. It may cause additional trauma as well is used without caution or improperly.

Do Inversion Tables Work for Lower Back Pain?

A variety of methods have been used to manage and possibly treat lower back pain, from a visit to a chiropractor to using heated pads. However, the benefits of using of inversion tables for lower back pain was met with criticism and further skepticism. Lower back pain is a common type of back pains often caused by hard physical labor, trauma or accidents.

The question at the end that begs an answer is ‘Do Inversion Tables Work for lower back pain?’ The answer is a resounding yes! Inversion tables do works for lower back pain, and you must try it for yourself to discover. Every day we put our backs through mechanical force extensively, we use our back almost for everything. Therefore, it is prudent that you seek lower back pain relief as soon as the pain begins cropping up.

If you are suffering from any back pain, it is often advisable to do inversion table therapy to ease the pain.

Who Should Not Use Inversion Tables?

A cautionary word on those who are forbidden from using the Inversion tables includes people with lumbar instability, i.e., spondylolisthesis or spinal fracture. Also, inversion tables are not ideal for people with neck pain as it’s only best used to treat back pain. Cervical traction devices often treat neck pain (e.g., pneumatic and ramp devices).

Moreover, if you are diagnosed with high blood pressure (hypertension), glaucoma, heart disease, hernia (abdominal or inguinal), osteoporosis, hip/knee joint conditions, and those who are pregnant. It is often recommended that you speak with your physician before attempting inversion tables’ therapy for clarity.

Always seek medical attention when you feel the following symptoms even after trying inversion table therapy:

If the Low or lower back pain continues to be or becomes severe and persistent

If the pain does not subside after a few days of therapy

If the therapy interferes with sleep quality and daily routines

If you have bowel or bladder dysfunction and weakness and numbness in the groin region or legs, immediate specialized medical attention should be sought after.


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