Back pain is one of the most common injuries. 8 out of 10 of us will have back pain in our lifetime. It is a billion dollar industry, yet so many people are still hurting or the pain keeps on returning. There are many so people out there giving their advice on how treat back pain. You will hear a lot of advice on how to treat your back from your friends and family, from a Facebook groups, from healthcare providers such as massage therapist, doctors, personal trainers, etc. Yet some how nothing seems to work and frustration happens as you feel like you are not going to ever enjoy the things you love because of this pain. So lets take you down a path of what not to do. At the end I will offer you 5 Tips to fix your back pain for FREE so stay tuned.
Mistake #1: Core Strengthening
If you have back pain, just strengthening your core and that will help. Not really true. You need to get to the route cause first. What are you doing throughout the day that is creating this problem? What is the source of the pain? If you do not work on those questions first, then strengthening will not help. Once I get to the source of the problem, we then start to get them back to what they love to do and work on getting them stronger. Core strengthening first is not the solution to your back pain.
Mistake #2: Stretch your hamstrings
When you have back pain stretching your hamstrings alone will not help. In fact if you have leg pain, it is one of the last things I want to do. Again, we have to get to the source of your pain first. Once we have the pain under control, we will then start to work on other things that need to be addressed. A lot of other physical therapists will throw everything at you all at once, when there is a process and a method to getting your back to what you love.
Mistake #3: Bring your knees to your chest to stretch
Most people are told and/or want to bend forward forward to stretch the muscles that are so tight due to the back pain. Most of the time this is the wrong direction to go into. Did you know that we bend 2000-4000 times a day? I think we have the bending forward covered. If you are being told bring your knees to your chest and you are not getting better or getting worse, I would stop this exercise. You could be doing more harm than good.
Mistake #4: Go get a Massage
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a massage too. But if you have an back pain, more than likely it won’t help initially. If you get a massage and then 2 hours to a day later your pain returns. You are not getting to the source of the problem. You are just treating the symptoms. Muscle tightness from pain is a symptom of something else that is wrong. Your muscles are tightening up to protect the source. It is a physical therapist who specializes in treatment of back pain’s job to evaluate you to get to the source of the problem.
Mistake #5: Get and Injection or take pain medications
While there are times we need an injection or to take medications, too often it gets offered as the only solution which then can lead you down the road of frustration. Injections and drugs treat the chemical side of things from an injury. That is the inflammation. But there is a mechanical side to pain too. What does that mean? Can you change your position and make your pain better or worse? Does your pain come and go? These are great questions to ask yourself. If you answer yes to these questions, then I would try going to a physical therapist who specializes in lower back pain, as the injection and drugs will not likely fix the problem.
Mistake #6: Not going to a Physical Therapist who specializes in the spine.
The problem is you do not know what you are doing in your daily life that is creating this problem and if you do not fix that even after surgery you will hurt again if your pain came on for no reason initially. Doing an evaluation by a Physical Therapist who specializes in lower back pain will help you to know what is right for you to help your body heal. And it does heal. I have seen it thousands of times.
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