Have you noticed that your back pain has gotten worse over the years? Is it getting in the way of your normal routines and becoming more than you can manage? Few problems can render a person’s ability to move and fulfill basic needs like chronic back pain can!
If you suffer from chronic back pain, you’re certainly not alone. According to a division of the National Institutes of Health, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), more than 100 million Americans suffer from chronic back pain.
Chronic pain presents numerous challenges for people of all ages and backgrounds. While traditional approaches involve the use of painkillers and surgery, there are safer alternatives such as physical therapy. Physical therapy may alleviate pain symptoms while also providing significant benefits!
If you’re struggling with back pain, call our clinic today to learn more about our non-invasive treatment options.
What is chronic back pain?
Chronic back pain refers to pain that lasts more than three months. It is a progressive pain that gradually worsens with time and basic daily activities. Back pain can be caused by several factors.
However, most people can recover from back pain by understanding exactly what happened to cause it and avoiding those kinds of improper movements in the future, however, not every case of back pain is the same, especially those that do not derive from an isolated event, such as a car accident.
Causes of chronic back pain
The Mayo Clinic states that those with poor posture, bulging or herniated discs, arthritis, skeletal irregularities, and osteoporosis may suffer from chronic back pain more often than others. Other factors such as age, weight, poor lifting practices, and even mental health conditions can also increase an individual’s risk for back pain. It only takes one injury for a condition to persist into the realm of long-term problems. Chronic pain can be felt all over the back, or in just an isolated area such as the lumbar region, mid-back, or upper back area.
Chronic back pain may arise from two issues, including a sudden, traumatic injury or repetitive stress on the vertebrae. Pain includes sensations, such as a prick, burn, tingle, sting, sharp pain, and aches. Acute pain is typically an expected bodily response to a severe injury. However, the repeated use of joints after an inflammatory response may lead to the worsening of symptoms and disease progression, explains the NINDS.
How Physical Therapy Can Help Relieve Back Pain
According to Move Forward PT, most government agencies (including the CDC) now recommend the use of non-invasive treatments, such as physical therapy, before medication or surgical management of chronic pain, including chronic back pain.
Choosing physical therapy for initial treatment is quickly becoming the most popular and well-recommended means of managing chronic pain! This is because physical therapy not only relieves painful symptoms, but also pinpoints the underlying causes of pain, and improves joint health. Five ways that physical therapy treatment can manage or alleviate chronic pain are as follows:
- Passive and active exercises can restore range of motion. Physical therapy involves both passive and active exercises to promote healing. Range of motion exercises prevent joints from becoming fixed, allowing a person to move more with less pain over time. Passive motion exercises can help you if you’re in too much pain to move a joint on your own.
- Decreases inflammation. As the joint begins to improve in health, inflammatory responses decrease, resulting in less pain.
- Improves circulation to the affected area. The better the circulation is to the affected area, the faster healing can take place. It also ensures the joint has plenty of nutrients to repair itself.
- Education to prevent worsening or recurrence of condition/symptoms. Understanding the causes of back pain and how to prevent it, such as maintaining proper posture and avoiding improper lifting techniques, can reduce your risk of chronic back pain.
- Increases overall muscle strength. A physical therapist will work with you to develop an exercise regimen that is safe and effective for joint health, muscle strength, and endurance. This provides a protective effect and prevents back pain.
Want to kiss chronic back pain goodbye?
Chronic back pain can be debilitating. Trying to continue to live your life on your terms whilst being held back by movement restrictions due to pain is frustrating. Those living with chronic back pain should consider giving physical therapy a try first instead of opting for costly, painful, and invasive treatments, or risking opioid addiction.
To learn more about how you can achieve a pain-free life through physical therapy, contact our clinic today to schedule an appointment.