This blog piece is written by our Sports Chiropractor Espen Holth, and he aims to provide you with an honest and evidence based approach to your back pain, if you want learn more about him click here.
For the last 5 years, I’ve spent more time than I can count researching why back pain occurs, how to get you out of pain, and how to keep you out of pain. Chiropractors go through an extensive Masters Degree to become specialists of the musculoskeletal system, with a focus on the spine. Spine doctors; some say, “bone crackers” being a less specific term.
Before I started my studies, I didn’t realize how many actually suffered with back pain on a daily basis. When I told people I was studying to become a Chiropractor, I suddenly had close friends, not so close friends, family members and even random encounters with people who started telling me about the back pain they had been suffering with for years. They started telling me how it affected their day to day activities, their work life, and even their mood.
Actually, studies have found that businesses on average lose more than 13.4 days to sick leave because of back pain, costing the businesses over £1385 every year -click here for more info. But it doesn’t just affect the businesses. If you are self-employed, and rely solely on one source of income, a two week stop of work means two weeks without income, and this can be a massive source of distress.
Luckily, most types of back pain won’t cause you any long term harm or disability, and for most, the back pain will ease on its own within 2 months. For the most part, we don’t need expensive scans like MRIs, Ultrasound, or even X-rays. Scans can be associated with higher disability, but in some cases it’s important to use it to exclude more severe problems.
We all want a quick fix, that instant gratification. There is a reason why certain fads catch on, they promise the world, but yet time and time again they are proven ineffective. When back pain occurs, and especially back pain that persists past 3 months, factors other than just pure anatomy come in to play. We become apprehensive, we become worried, and research has shown that our brain creates new connections so a greater area of your brain is sensitive to the area in question. I have discussed this in further detail in a previous blog post.
What I offer as a Chiropractor isn’t just a quick fix: I offer you knowledge, knowledge regarding the cause of the problem, and what I through my research and experiences have found to aid in both short and long term relief of the problem. My goal is always to get you back on your feet, whether that is to perform certain sports, work, or school. And often this means I will put the ball on your side of the court. In the end it’s not the 30 minutes you spend with me that matters the most, it’s what you do the other 23 and a half hours a day.