How To Treat Back Pain – Methods And Exercises

How To Treat Back Pain – Methods And Exercises

Back pain is considered one of the most common illnesses around the world. More than half of us suffer from mild or severe forms of it, even if we’re not aware of it.

One of the severe cases is Cathryn Jakobson Ramin’s back pain problem which started when she fell off the horse. Since then, everything had been more difficult to her. From house chores to different tasks at work, all of these were accomplished while enduring severe back pain. She tried various methods to get rid of the pain, including the 8000$ surgery, but nothing worked for her. But that was until she decides to take the matter into her own hands and to investigate closely the facts, treatments and methods regarding back pain.

After a short period of time, she released a study named “Crooked: Outwitting the Back Pain Industry and Getting on the Road to Recovery”, which has been recently published. She came in contact with different things such as psychotherapy, acupuncture, yoga or spinal manipulation, so on and so forth. Ramin realized then that some of these actually work. In order to make her study a high-quality research, she got informed, by reading more than 65 studies and by “interviewing” various doctors and experts, about the passive and the active types of therapies and their effects.

Exploring these alternatives instead of going directly for surgical interventions might be the best solution for many of us who suffer from different types of pain. So far, doctors and patients didn’t trust these unusual treatments due to the lack of research they had “stumbled upon”. But nowadays scientists studied their effects and came to surprising results.

Common Medicines

Given the fact that almost 30 people out of 100 suffer from lower back pain in the U.S.A, some expenditures have to be made in order to solve the problem. America has to spend over 90 billion dollars per year only for back pain issues. Too bad the money is spent on not-so-effective-treatments. And no wonder, because of there different types of back pain. Many of the people who endure back pain have something called “nonspecific back pain”, meaning that nobody knows what could possibly be the cause of this illness.

Of course, the common medicine suggests using in this case the traditional treatments, namely surgery, meds or even injections of steroids. Of course, this doesn’t sound good at all. Especially because of the effects these might have on a long term. After injecting steroids nothing can be like it has been before, right? Actually, all of these treatments might have secondary effects and in the worst case scenario, they could also affect your health on a long period of time.

New Research Results – First alternative!

Reaching a dead end was a corner stone for the doctors and scientists. Recently there have been “reported” on-going researches regarding lower back pain. Scientists started from zero, they avoided the commonly used methods and tried to find something better. The American College of Physicians offered the first alternative and suggested using methods that don’t imply meds. More specifically, they claimed that acupuncture, yoga, Tai Chi, etc, could be really effective. Only a month later, a health agency suggested using the same method. In a world which is still dominated by common medicine methods, having the alternative of trying natural painless treatments that involve movement sounds very appealing.

Getting Better By Moving

Whenever pain is involved, the first thing you have been probably told to do is rest. But recent studies show that resting might not be the best solution. Exercising engages the muscles in different effective activities to improve the blood flow, so on and so forth. Doctors say that the most important thing is to find a suitable therapy and stick to it for as long as they need it. Having a schedule and finding enough time to do the exercises is the key.

Yoga time

Probably one of the most studied types of exercises, Yoga can indeed decrease the level of back pain you’re feeling, researchers say. It appears that from all of the various subtypes of Yoga, Iyengar, Hatha, and Viniyoga are the most effective ones. Tai Chi, Pilates and even simple exercises like jogging could improve the state of the spine.

Specialist’s Advice

Your ligaments and muscles tell the story of how you got the back pain. Someone who can decipher it might really come in handy. The specialist can not only observe and analyze the posture the way you walk but also “prescribe” you a suitable therapy in order to deal easily with the pain and also decrease the level of lower back pain. One of these specialists is Stuart McGill, from the University of Waterloo who is mostly known for his 3 McGill Big 3 exercises, namely “the bird dog”, “the curl-up” and “the side bridge”. These are the exercises which are used by Ramin and she does them in order to stabilize her spine and to decrease the pain she’s feeling.

Second Alternative

It depends on what type of lower back pain you’re facing. Maybe DIY exercises aren’t 100% effective, but maybe all of these together could have a different result. Specialists stopped analyzing the physical side and the mental one separately. They say that this might be one of the cases in which the mental side is involved as well. For example, when it comes to chronic lower back pain, the best method would be combining both physical and mental therapies. People could use massage, spinal manipulation, acupuncture or even psychotherapy in order to decrease the level of pain and to stabilize their spine.

Unfortunately, when it comes to acupuncture, not-so-many things are known. It is still considered unusual and probably painful for many people. But, fortunately, this isn’t the case of every of the methods mentioned before. If consulting the specialist is still not enough for you, then you should know that there are plenty of studies available almost everywhere regarding this issue and you can always rely on knowledge.


I am a pop culture and social media expert. Aside from writing about the latest news health, I also enjoy pop culture and Yoga. I have BA in American Cultural Studies and currently enrolled in a Mass-Media MA program. I like to spend my spring breaks volunteering overseas.

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