Providing high quality and thorough chiropractic care to people of all ages.
Are you in pain? Well, I know I am, but that’s because I went to the gym yesterday!
This is a simple example of how some pain is normal and expected, while some pain can be because of an underlying problem. Back pain, for example, is not normal or expected. So, how can we tell when pain is not to be concerned about and will go away on its own? If the pain is not going away on its own, are there any possible consequences of doing nothing and leaving it as it is?
There are many factors to consider when figuring out if pain is normal or not. Here’s just a few of the questions we might ask as Chiropractors to determine this –
Let’s go through an example to work out if there may be implications for leaving pain alone.
You’ve been sitting at work for 8 years now. It used to be completely fine to do this – you were 28 when you started that job and having a younger, stronger spine meant you could cope with the stiffness. As the years went on, the stiffness progressively became worse. Now it’s at a point where an hour into work you get a persistent and frustrating ache in the lowest part of your back, right above your pelvis. You’ve tried massaging it yourself – even tried laying on a tennis ball to try to relieve it – but the ache keeps coming back the more you stay sitting.
There are a number of things that may be causing the problem –
Because of this, leaving the pain alone may result in these problems worsening. The other implication of leaving persistent pain alone is the possibility of it becoming chronic.
Put simply, chronic pain means long term pain. Chronic pain can happen for many reasons, a couple of those including –
Once chronic pain occurs, it can be much more difficult to get the pain to go away. Sometimes gentle resistance exercises may help with pain, however if your posture or the way you move puts too much stress on certain parts of the body, resistance exercises can cause more pain. This is why I often recommend correcting your posture and achieving correct exercise form before attempting more strenuous exercises.
To sum this up, the best way to avoid chronic pain and the worsening of conditions is to seek help from a qualified health professional sooner rather than later. The difference in how much easier it usually is to help pain which hasn’t been an issue for a long time vs pain that’s been going on for years is huge! If you have a regular health professional such as a Chiropractor, Osteopath or Physiotherapist, it is advisable to book an appointment with them to discuss the pain you are experiencing and form a plan to manage it.
By Dr. Beau Kenihan (Chiropractor)