By wattochirop26006605, Aug 23 2017 09:34PM
Personally, I was motivated to continue my education in graduate school learning to becoma a Chiropractor because of my ownlow back challenges as a 22 year old college student facing a life-time of low back pain. In my career I have read thousands of articles on low back pain. Below are excepts from, an excellent aricle about low back pain. It was written by a medical physician, and in one section he wrote about the benefits of chiropractic care.
Low back pain is one of the most common conditions in the US. According to estimates, as many as eight out of 10 Americans struggle with back pain. It is one of the leading causes of disability. In the US, it accounts for 10 percent of all primary care doctors visits each year, costing Americans as much as $86 billion annually, but according to recent findings, back pain is also the number one cause of job disability worldwide.
A Driving Force Behind A Growing Drug Problem
Lower back pain is one of the primary reasons why people get hooked on prescription painkillers. Deaths caused by overdosing on painkillers now surpass murders and fatal car accidents in the US. Over the past five years, heroin deaths have increased by 45 percent. An increase that officials blame on the rise of addictive prescription drugs such as Vicodin, OxyContin, Percocet, codeine, and Fentora, all of which are opioids (derivatives of opium). Once some becomes addicted to prescrition medication heroin is simply a cheaper option.
Still, prescription painkillers claim far more lives than illegal street drugs like heroin. In 2010 prescription painkillers were responsible for 16,600 deaths in 2010—well over five times more than those caused by heroin. Both patients and doctors need to become better informed about the risk of prescription opiods. Back pain is a driving force behind opioid drug use, which makes it a central focus not just for decreasing disability claims and improving health and quality of life for millions of people, but also for tackling a rapidly growing problem of legal drug abuse and the associated death toll.
Beware: The Worst Treatment Options for Back Pain Are Also the Most Commonly Prescribed
Despite it being so common, few people—including specialists—have a clear understanding of how to treat back pain. Typically, chronic back pain will result in a prescription for a painkiller. Surgery is another overused and largely ineffective strategy that rarely leads to full recovery. On the contrary, it's usually the quickest route to a life of permanent disability.
If you have low back pain and see different specialists, you will get different tests: rheumatologists will order blood tests, neurologists will order nerve impulse tests, and surgeons will order MRIs and CT scans. But no matter what tests you get, you'll probably end up with a spinal fusion because it's one of the "more lucrative procedures in medicine," according to Shannon Brownlee, author of the book, Overtreated: Why Too Much Medicine Is Making Us Sicker and Poorer. This despite the fact that the best success rate for spinal fusions is a mere 25 percent! According to one 2011 review, more than 17 percent of patients told they needed spinal surgery actually showed no abnormal neurological or radiographic findings that would necessitate surgery.
Chiropractic Care May Relieve Pain Better Than Drugs
Seeing a Doctor of Chiropractic is wise option if you suffer from any type of chronic pain, including back pain. One study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine revealed that chiropractic care oftentimes provides greater relief than medication. After following more than 270 neck-pain patients for 12 weeks, researchers found that those who used a chiropractor or exercised were more than twice as likely to be pain-free compared to those who took medication. Although this study involved neck pain rather than back pain, it's likely the results apply to back pain as well. The results showed:
• 32 percent who received chiropractic care became pain-free
• 30 percent of those who exercised became pain-free
• 13 percent of those treated with medication became pain-free
I am an avid believer in the chiropractic philosophy, which places a strong emphasis on your body's innate healing wisdom and far less reliance on Band-Aid solutions like drugs and surgery. Chiropractic, osteopathic, and naturopathic physicians receive extensive training in the management of musculoskeletal disorders during their course of graduate healthcare training, which typically lasts anywhere from four to six years.
Due to their comprehensive training in musculoskeletal management, numerous sources of evidence have shown that chiropractic management is much safer and often more effective than allopathic medical treatments, particularly for back and neck pain. In addition, researchers have also found that chiropractic adjustments affect our bodies on a deep cellular level. This means that chiropractic care may affect basic physiological processes that influence oxidative stress and DNA repair, so in addition to addressing any immediate spinal misalignment that might cause pain, it may also address deeper dysfunction in your body.
The Importance of Proper Posture, Both When Sitting and Standing
Addressing your posture is another critical element of self-care that, in many cases, can even help eliminate chronic back pain altogether. Spending most of your day slouched behind a desk or on the couch is a surefire way to develop back pain. Sitting is also an independent risk factor of everything from diabetes to heart disease, and can even take years off your life—even if you exercise regularly!
By understanding the functional biomechanics of your body, you can learn to optimize the way you move at all times. This in turn effectively prevents aches and pains from developing. An effective method to relearn proper posture is Foundation Training, developed by chiropractor Dr. Eric Goodman to address his own chronic back pain.
Another important factor is to simply stand up at regular intervals, as this will help counteract the ill effects of sitting. I've found that every 15 minutes seems to be the "sweet spot" for me. I simply set a timer to go off at 15-minute intervals, at which time I stand up and do a few jump squats, one-legged squats, or a wide variety of different hip and chest stretches.
PLEASE Read This Recommendation BEFORE You Ever Consider Back Surgery
Surgery should only be considered until and after all other treatment options have been exhausted. Please avoid surgery until you've tried K-Laser — it's just that good. You have virtually nothing to lose except some time and a relatively minor investment in the treatment, and everything to gain.
Considering the risks, I strongly recommend exhausting your options before resorting to a narcotic pain reliever or surgery. I believe there are better and much safer alternatives, including intermittent movement, postural training, chiropractic, osteopathic, naturopathic, acupuncture, and K-Laser treatment. Neither drugs nor surgery address the underlying cause of your pain, and both come with the risk of serious side effects. The following options can also provide pain relief. So if you're in pain, try these first, before even thinking about prescription painkillers of any kind.
1. Eliminate or radically reduce processed foods, grains, and processed sugars from your diet. Avoiding grains and processed sugars will lower your insulin and leptin levels and decrease insulin and leptin resistance, which is one of the most important reasons why inflammatory prostaglandins are produced. That is why stopping sugar and sweets is so important to controlling your pain and other types of chronic illnesses.
2. Start taking high-quality omega-3 fat.
3. Optimize your production of vitamin D by getting regular, appropriate sun or safe tanning bed exposure, which will work through a variety of different mechanisms to reduce your pain.
4. Ginger: This herb has potent anti-inflammatory activity and offers pain relief and stomach-settling properties. Fresh ginger works well steeped in boiling water as a tea or grated into vegetable juice.
5. Curcumin: In a study of osteoarthritis patients, those who added 200 mg of curcumin a day to their treatment plan had reduced pain and increased mobility. A past study also found that a turmeric extract composed of curcuminoids blocked inflammatory pathways, effectively preventing the overproduction of a protein that triggers swelling and pain.
6. Boswellia: Also known as boswellin or "Indian frankincense," this herb contains specific active anti-inflammatory ingredients. This is one of my personal favorites as I have seen it work well with many rheumatoid arthritis patients.
7. Bromelain: This enzyme, found in pineapples, is a natural anti-inflammatory. It can be taken in supplement form but eating fresh pineapple, including some of the bromelain-rich stem, may also be helpful.
(All of these nutritional recommendations are found in the "Joint Support Formula" by Anabolic Labs and available in our office.)
If you have low back pain call us at 570-539-2600