Stop Back Pain Now
By Tyler Guymon, DPT, Cert DN
AZOPT Buckeye Clinic Manager
Back pain is a major problem for many people. It can come in different ways – as a small, nagging injury, or worse, a debilitating condition. Regardless of its severity, back pain is a nuisance that affects our lives and our daily function. And still, many people address and treat back pain the wrong way! So here is my list of things to stop when you have back pain:
Stop waiting for the pain to go away.
If you have had pain for more than a week, see your physical therapist. Arizona is a direct access state which allows people, depending on insurance, the right to see a physical therapist without having to see a doctor first. While you may be tempted to manage the pain yourself, the earlier you start treatment, the sooner you’ll recover.
Stop Trying Passive Treatments only
Passive treatments like heat, ice and ultrasound feel good, but their effect is usually only temporary. Passive treatments will not eliminate the back pain by itself. Research has indicated that active exercise and postural correction along with manual therapy and hands on techniques are effective remedies for the treatment of low back pain.
Stop Repetitive Bending
Another common cause of low back pain is frequent forward bending that increases pressure on the discs in the back, leading to muscle aches and pains. Limiting your forward bending and performing lifts with proper technique will lessen the pressure and torque in the back.
Stop Avoiding Exercise
While it may uncomfortable and nerve racking to get started, appropriate exercise is proven to be beneficial for most low back pain. Exercise helps keep your core muscles strong, and provides increased circulation to your joints and discs.
One of the most common causes of low back pain is poor posture. The strain on the back while sitting in a slouched position can cause excessive pressure on the joints, muscles and discs, causing pain. Learn to sit with correct posture and maintain that posture as much as possible to help decrease or eliminate low back pain. Also, be sure your work-space is set up properly at home and at work.
Stop Focusing on a Diagnosis
A good amount of low back pain can be classified as “non-specific”, meaning that the root of your pain cannot be pinpointed to one specific problem. While common diagnostic tests for low back pain can show the bones, discs and joints with great detail, no test can tell the exact cause of your pain with 100% accuracy. Back pain can be influenced by many different factors and it may be difficult to attribute it to one specific reason.
Minor problems are better addressed by a doctor or physical therapist before they become major issues that affect your quality of life. Please call us if you have back pain to find out more about how we can help!