Dispelling the Myths About Back Pain

As a Chiropractor, its funny to read and hear folks talk and write about back pain.  Many times there is truth and validity regarding their back pain but there are also many myths that should be dispelled.

Here I will discuss just a few Myths along with Facts related to back pain: First let’s look at some facts. 

Less than 1% of acute lower back pain is due to a serious infection or condition such as cancer or spinal injury.  For individuals who are younger than 50, the rate is even lower. Back pain is one of the biggest disabilities for those under the age of 45, and it’s second to the common cold for the reason to seek a health care provider in the United States.

  • ‘Most back pain requires surgery’ – Myth
    • Under 2% of patients experiencing back pain need surgery
    • Back pain, however is the 3rd top reason for surgery
  • ‘There’s nothing really wrong with you’ – Myth
    • Chronic back pain sufferers regularly hear this from their doctors
    • A large percent of back pain can be due to spinal misalignment that medication can not help
    • Medication is given for the symptom and the cause is left untreated
  • ‘People don’t die from chronic back pain’ – Myth
    • Believe it or not, chronic back pain if left untreated can lead to depression and anxiety
    • In long term cases, the depression and anxiety can lead to suicidal tendencies
  • ‘Use heat for back pain’ -Myth
    • Although the heat may feel comforting it is not healing
    • Ice is used to reduce the internal swelling and promote healing
    • You can use heat such as a hot shower, as long as it is followed with ice
  • ‘Lie down and rest for back pain’ – Myth
    • As silly as it sounds, bed rest can hinder the recovery
    • It’s important to remain active and but at a slower pace
    • Bed rest will keep the swelling intact, which will slow the recovery process
  • ‘Back pain is more common in men vs women’ – Myth
    • Back pain is not gender specific
    • It is thought that it is more common in men because of activity or occupational hazards, but that is far from the truth

I hope I have dispelled some myths regarding back pain.  Chiropractors are detectors of the cause of such pain.  We will take x-rays, educate the patient and show them the areas of involvement that may be causing the symptom of back pain. 

Chiropractic specific adjustments will remove the subluxation, or misalignment that will reduce the symptom.  We look for the cause and treat the cause, which in turn will help with the symptom.

Yours in health,