There are a number of ways to treat back pain, including surgery and medication, as well as various forms of therapy such as chiropractic care and osteopathy. But how big of a deal is back pain anyway?
Back pain is a problem that is affecting millions of British & Americans and many more all over the world. Statistics compiled by the American Chiropractic Association, an organization that specializes in chiropractic care across the nation, indicated that:
The most common solution provided by most medical doctors, is of course, to prescribe medication. Generally, doctors will start with over the counter medications. They will then graduate to other meds from anti-inflammatory medicines to muscle relaxants. Even anxiety medications and anti-depressants may be used as a way to help the patient cope with the pain. These medications may lead to a number of side effects and possible health risks. They will not alter the root cause of the condition.
“But isn’t the point of medication to cure back pain?” you may ask.
The truth is the majority of back pain medication only provides a temporary fix to your situation. Drugs will not completely cure back pain. Medication often ‘deals’ with the symptoms of the wear and tear on your back but beyond a band aid they give no cure. That’s partly because the problems with your back are not chemical but are a result usually either of misalignment or actually tissue damage. In some cases, an anti-inflammatory may bring swelling and other irritations down, but they may rise again later.
However, there may clearly be a case short-term case for pain medication, especially anti-inflammatories, if you have sustained a traumatic sprain/strain injury. The most underused anti-inflammatory though is Ice! Ice can powerfully decrease inflammation. The only possible side effect is an ice burn if there is not an appropriate barrier between the skin and ice.
None of these measures should be used long term! If pain has not decreased, and normal function regained, within a week then you should be consulting an expert for help. Any persistent pain, whether back pain or elsewhere, is the result of a loss of function somewhere. Some conditions, such as a severely arthritic knee, may not respond to chiropractic or osteopathy. In these cases immediate referral to a specialist may be required. However, the majority of musculoskeletal conditions respond very well to conservative care, and may just “cure back pain” for you!
So what are the alternatives? Two common, and effective therapies, come to mind and those are chiropractic care and osteopathy. These two treatments offer a variety of physical therapy and other techniques don’t involve drugging you up with medication that produces harmful side effects and health risks. Instead, they actually help cure back pain rather than just numbing us to it for a time.
So what is Osteopathy? Osteopathy, instead of medications or surgical procedures, offers a safe, and very soothing alternative to other options to cure back pain. Our team of osteopaths utilize a variety of techniques including massage, spinal and joint mobilisations. There are other techniques that work with your bone structure and other tissue in your back to help relax and heal the strain. Osteopathy is an alternative form of medicine. The General Osteopathy Council registers all osteopaths in the UK. In addition to Osteopathy, one of the more common alternatives to treating back pain comes through chiropractic care.
In the USA over 22 million Americans visit a chiropractic care provider in order to receive relief from back pain. Chiropractic is the worlds third largest health care profession.
In chiropractic care, the theory is that most back pain (along with other aches, pains and loss of optimal function) is caused by misalignment of the body, in particular in the spinal cord. Your visit to a chiropractic care provider will begin with an examination and of course a study of your medical history, thorough physical examination and a report of findings. If care is appropriate the chiropractor may then may make a few “manual specific chiropractic adjustments” during which your chiropractor will physically realign your body. In some cases, follow-up care may include a course of adjustments, advice on dietary requirements, rehabilitation exercises and a full recovery plan with rehabilitation and therapy related activities. The General Chiropractic Council registers all chiropractors in the UK.
Some surveys have shown a higher rate of satisfaction overall compared to patients who pursue traditional medical options in treating their back pain.
17 Church Road, Caversham, Reading, Berkshire RG4 7AA
Reflex Spinal Health are a passionate, dynamic spinal health team. We are committed to help as many in our community of Reading, Berkshire and South Oxfordshire to enjoy the vitality of great health, to reach their health goals and feel truly alive! Our chiropractors and osteopaths offer the highest standards of care in a superb environment.