Critical Back Pain Mistakes Made by People Aged 40+ and How to Avoid Them
When it comes to back pain, their are a lot of misconceptions and false beliefs that can actually hold us back from living the life we want. The following are the five critical mistakes we see people make when trying to recover from back pain and some tips on what you can do to avoid them.
Rest and Immobilization
For years, the go-to response for pain and injury (often told to them by their doctor) is to rest and take some pain pills and wait for the pain to go away on its own. Research has shown that prolonged immobilization of the injured area can lead to further damage while movement improves the health of the tissue, speeds healing time and protects our body from future injuries. The best thing you can do after suffering an injury is to get it moving.
Wait for Pain to Go Away On It’s Own
One solution a lot of people try is to just ignore it. The solution worked a little better in our 20’s and 30’s but as we age - waiting for the pain to go away is always a bad idea. The primary cause of age related pain is poor movement compounded by time. Which means the longer we ignore it, the worse the problem becomes and the harder it becomes to fix.
Stretch It Out
Many people have been given some easy stretches to help relieve back pain. This is an old-fashioned approach that its starting to be challenged. While stretching can provide some short term relief, it often puts extra stress on the spine itself which causes the pain to come back when we leave the position - often worse than before. The stretches needs to be chosen very, very carefully to avoid doing further damage to the spine.
Many people have simply given up. They’ve been convinced by family and friends (and a lot of times even their doctors) that pain is ‘just part of getting older’. or that they just have a ‘bad back’. Or they’ve tried so many things with limited results that they feel stuck - and so just come to accept it.
Back pain isn’t part of getting older and can ALWAYS by retraining how we move and building adequate strength to support the activities we love. Many of the people we’ve helped have been dealing with back pain for 5+ years and had learned to deal with it and are now pain free and living their life without any limitations.
Go in For Costly and Debilitating Surgery
Stuart McGill, the leading expert on treating back pain (he legitimately has a PhD in treating low back pain), states in his book Back Mechanic: The Secret to a Healthy Spine Your Doctor Isn’t Telling You that 95% of the patients he sees DO NOT need surgery, even though many were told it was their only cure. He explains that surgeries often work in the short term, but studies have shown that after a few years a surgical patient’s status is comparable to those who chose the non-surgical option.
Another thing to consider when you’re looking into surgery is that it truly is an “all in” approach. You’re not just “fixing” the injured area; you’re cutting though muscles and nerves, you’re removing areas of bone or cartilage that does not grow back, and you’re starting a scarring process that can entrap nerves and lead to chronic pain. Basically, there’s no going back from surgery. It’s an expensive and potentially debilitating treatment option whose long-term effectiveness has yet to be proven.
So there you have it. FIve of the most common mistakes that people with back pain make and what you can do to avoid them.
Evolve Performance Healthcare Helps Adults Aged 40+ Find LASTING Solutions to Nagging Aches and Pain So They Can Continue to Do What They Love And Stay Out of the Doctor’s Office.