Are you living with or worried about someone suffering from chronic lower back pain?
Hi, I’m Dr. Scott Gray. I’m the owner and founder of Back in Motion in Fort Myers, Florida.
In this article, I’m gonna explain what chronic back pain is, why it occurs, and most importantly, what you can do about it.
What Is Chronic Back Pain?
Chronic lower back pain, by definition, is when back pain has persisted longer than a 12-week period.
The reason why it’s labeled as a 12-week period is that most tissues in the body can heal within a 12-week window.
So after this period of time, we then are denoted or labeled a patient as chronic back pain because the normal healing process has transpired and that person still has pain. So, that’s how we label it as chronic back pain.
Now in contrast to chronic back pain, we also have got acute and a settled condition of back pain.
Acute is when you bend over and hurt your back, and that’s at the onset of your back pain. Now as days go by still in pain, it then becomes subacute which means it’s still fragile and but it’s healing?
Then from that point on, from that five-day period on up to 12 weeks is what we call the settled stage, and that’s where a lot of the healing process occurs.
But after that 12-week window, again, that’s when it becomes chronic.
3 Most Common Causes Of Chronic Back Pain….
#1 Too Must Resting
The first reason you may have chronic back pain is that you rested the entire time after injuring the tissue.
When you injure your tissue, it needs specific exercises and remodeling. And when you don’t remodel that tissue, then any time that tissue has to contract or stretch, you’re gonna get pain because of the formation of scar tissue.
#2 False Information
The second reason is you’ve been given false information.
Say you hurt your back bending over at work, you then go to the local hospital system, and they take a bunch of images and they find all this crazy stuff that’s wrong with your back.
Chances are, you probably just strained your back, and it needs just a little bit of rehabilitation and exercise to get it over the top.
But since they’ve done the x-rays and imaging, they’ve found things such as a bulging and herniated disc, spinal stenosis, foraminal narrowing, or osteophytes in your spine.
They tell you these things and as a patient, you become labeled, right?
You then create a psychological component to your pain experience. And because you think that you’re worse off than what you really are and as the patient you become worried, you think about your life, you’re afraid to move and exercise.
Then, what this does is it not only you have injured tissues, but now you’re injuring your brain and your thought process of what you are as a human being.
So, you become labeled, afraid to move, and it creates this cascade of then de- conditioning, decreased fitness, and then you get chronic back pain. Right?
#3 Wrong Treatments
The third reason is you didn’t get the right treatments.
So if you injure your back and you just go and take painkillers or injections, chances are, your tissues aren’t probably going to heal the way that they need to heal.
Again, as this process goes on in that 12-week window, you get chronic back pain because it doesn’t go away. And so then you’re just stuck with this lingering lower back pain.
Treatment For Chronic Back Pain Your Medical Provider Isn’t Talking About
So, how do you treat chronic lower back pain?
That’s one of the main reasons why people come to Back in Motion, on a day-to-day basis, and it’s because of our Gray Method™ approach, and we try to address the root cause of it, right?
Unlike most medical providers out there who just prescribe painkillers, surgery, or injections.
Those methods might be needed from time to time, they never really get to the root cause of what caused it.
For instance, is it weak muscles of the spine?
Do you have inadequate flexibility at your hips that’s causing you to round out your back?
Are you sitting incorrectly?
Are you sleeping incorrectly?
Do you not have enough rotation at your hips as a golfer?
These are the things that we need to really address for underlying lower back pain that doesn’t go away, right?
I would say, in a nutshell, that’s one of the main reasons why people come to Back in Motion, is because they’ve tried all these things and they just haven’t had any relief.
With our three-step process of looking at the three key areas of the body which are the thoracic spine, hips, and feet, we usually can pinpoint why your lower back pain has occurred and create an action plan for you to address it and get back in motion safely and soundly.
So, there you have it. In a nutshell, that’s how, why, and what makes our approach to treating lower back pain different here at our physical therapy clinic in Fort Myers and Cape Coral Florida.