4-Step Process of Overcoming Back Pain
Back Pain is one of the most common physical ailments that affects our society.
Statistically, Back Pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide.
Not to mention the nationwide costs: upwards of $100 billion dollars between doctors visits, medications, supplies, diagnostics, any lost time/productivity from work.
But maybe it doesn’t have to be this way for you.
Back pain can be reduced, reversed, and/or resolved.
1. Identify the Pain Generator(s)
When I say pain generator(s), I am referring to the various tissues/structures in the back that can cause pain. These common sources include: muscles, joints, discs, and nerves. In some cases, Back Pain may be caused by one or two sources, other cases in can be all of them.
It is important to decipher what the pain generators so that treatment, both clinical and home-based, can be focused on the right area(s).
With medical advances like MRI and other images, it should be easy to determine what the pain generator(s) are, right?
Although imaging can be a great tool to help diagnose where the issue is coming from, it doesn’t always tell the whole story, and at times, it can actually lead you down the wrong path of care.
For instance, contrast to popular thought, the presence of disc bulges or degeneration on an MRI does not necessarily equal pain. Research has found approximately half the population between age 30-39 walk around with asymptomatic disc issues (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4464797/).
So how are the pain generators identified?
In my opinion, this is done best on a thorough physical examination. Diagnostic tests, if necessary, can then be ordered to confirm and help dictate future medical care, but again, aren’t always necessary.
2. Implement Care Plan
Once the pain generator(s) are discovered, then the appropriate care plan can begin to help correct the faults or dysfunctional element(s) of the back. Remember, pain is like your check engine light. You have to fix the issue in order to shut off the signal. Once proper function is restored to the back, that is when patients start seeing a reduction in pain.
The care plan to restore function will depend on the severity of the functional limitations. Often times, conservative therapies like chiropractic care or physical therapy can do the trick. In more severe cases, medical treatments are beneficial.
In my clinic in Canton, OH, we combine the best of conservative medical treatment, chiropractic, and physical rehabilitation methods to help reduce, reverse, and many times resolve the patient’s condition(s). If the condition is beyond what are clinical skill sets are, then we help get patients to the right providers for another opinion and further treatment options.
3. Avoid Aggravating Activity
Throughout the process, it would make sense, to the best we can, to avoid aggravating activity. If there is a known activity or activities that seem to constantly aggravate or flare-up the pain, then we need to do the best we can to avoid these activities so that back can heal.
4. Perform Home Stretching/Exercises Even in the Absence of Symptoms
If you want long term results, getting into a daily routine with appropriate stretches and exercises is crucial.
Many patients often go through a course of corrective measures including physical therapy, chiropractic, and even surgery to get out of the painful phase and then stop doing the appropriate measures to keep the spine healthy.
The absence of symptoms does not equate to absence of problems. Our bodies are capable of adapting to a certain degree before the pain signaling starts up again. Maintaining function with routine home stretches and exercises, and in some cases, routine physical therapy or chiropractic supportive care can be extremely beneficial.
Conclusion/Discovery Call Offer:
Back pain is frustrating. It can affect many aspects of one’s life. But there is hope.
If you are in the Canton, OH and surrounding area and are looking for options, we can jump on a 20-minute discovery call together.
During this call, we can discuss what your symptoms are, what you have attempted to alleviate your pain, and ultimately see your condition is something we can help with at our Integrated Medical Clinic-Apex Physical Medicine.
Important: This call does not constitute a doctor-patient relationship and there will be no medical advice dispensed. But this call may help determine if our treatment program(s) would potentially be a good option for you to consider to reduce, reverse, and potentially help you get out of pain.
If you want to set up a discovery call, just send an email to DC@apexphysicalmedicine.com and we will get a call scheduled. Put ‘Discovery Call Request’ in the subject line.
We look forward to speaking with you soon!