Updated: Feb 27
Have you ever had a sudden sharp pain in your low back? The pain may go away quickly when you shift your weight, or it may linger for a while. It may travel into the back of the hips, around to the groin, and even down into the thighs. These are all pretty common signs of something known as SI Joint Dysfunction. It’s prevalent, especially in women, and for some can be a chronic issue.
The Sacroiliac (SI) joint connects the bottom of the spine to the pelvis. The main function of these joints is to absorb shock between the upper body and the pelvis and legs, and to allow a very slight mobilization of the area for easy trunk movement. This joint is surrounded by strong ligaments, as well as some that expand across the joint to the back of the pelvis for extra stability. This helps hinder large movements at the joint and aids with absorbing pressure. When this joint isn't gliding properly and functioning as it should, the result can be some pretty intense pain in the low back and hips.
SI joint dysfunction can be the result of a number of things including overuse, direct injury or trauma to the area, and probably the most common, ligament laxity from pregnancy. While SI joint dysfunction can happen to anyone, it’s far more prevalent in women who’ve gone through pregnancy. The hormones that cause the ligaments to relax during this time are normal and necessary, but unfortunately, those ligaments surrounding the SI joints can become a little too lax and potentially stay that way even long after. There are several activities that can irritate the condition, such as sit ups, cycling, squats, lunges, and running, but even something as simple as shifting your weight just right (or wrong) can be a quick reminder of any instability of the joint. While this condition can be painful and difficult to deal with at times, there are ways to manage and decrease your symptoms.
Keeping your back and hips strong can help the muscles in that area compensate for those loose ligaments, effectively keeping the SI joints functioning as they should.
Be sure that anytime you’re doing any sort of physical activity, you’re mindful of your form and posture so as not to put your SI joints under any undue stress.
Avoid crossing your legs, keep your hips level and weight evenly distributed as much as you can when sitting.
Don’t sit with your wallet in your back pocket. That thick wallet will shift your hip slightly on one side, resulting in an uneven distribution of weight and pressure through the SI joints.
Get a massage. You want the muscles in the area strong, but not tense or problematic; that will only make things worse. Plus, massage can help decrease the inflammation in the joint and surrounding tissues.
Here at Proactive, our therapists are well trained in making sure you receive the care you need when dealing with SI joint dysfunction. Massage and strategic mobilizations will be used to keep your body pain free. Book your appointment today and let’s finally get control of your SI joint pain.