Bad Back Pain
When someone has bad back pain that continues to linger in spine of the time and treatments that have been given to help the injury heal, patients have multiple options available to them. Patients who begin their medical care through their physician's guidance may continue to do so, eventually receiving more invasive back treatments such as steroid injections, implantable devices, and back surgery. Some patients may go the route of chiropractic care at some point if they become frustrated by the lingering symptoms of pain that they experience despite months of standard medical care. Some patients may choose alternative therapies, hoping that they will work on their own or to complement the care they are already receiving from their back specialist. Back pain is indeed a more difficult problem to treat when it has continued long enough to be classified as chronic. Yet as you will see in this informational resource there are literally hundreds of treatment options for you to choose from, ensuring that you will not run out of things to try to finally achieve lasting pain relief.
Let's take a look at some of the options that may be available to you over the course of your treatment program.
First, let's take a look at what chronic back pain is and why it is such a strange and vexing problem for you and your doctor to get rid of. Chronic back pain is, by most experts' definitions, pain that has lasted for more than three months. This lingering pain may originally begin with a sustained injury but continue long after the source of the pain has healed itself. Why? Why does the pain linger even after the source of the pain signals has gone away. One luminary in the field described the brain developing a memory for pain. This concept works in a similar way as the development of muscle memory, in which we perfect certain movement from doing them over and over again. When we learn how to ride a bicycle or to catch a baseball, this muscle memory may remain for life.
When a nerve or a muscle or a ligament or a spinal disc becomes injured, the cells from damaged tissues at the site of the injury send out distress signals to the body. As a result of this distress call, the immune system responds by rushing blood and nutrients and clotting factors to the site of injury, stimulating the healing process. This activity as part of the immune response results in the healing of the injury, but it also results in swelling, stiffness, and pain as well. Usually, this immune response will go away when the injury has been repaired, and the person will find relief.
The Perception of Pain: Ideally, The temporary that we experience as part of the healing process will go away as the source of the injury goes away. However, a funny mechanism may occur in the complex circuitry in our complex nervous system. The pain lingers even after the damages structure has been fixed. It seems that the brain keeps sending out pain signals even though nothing is damaged. Where does this new pain signal originate? Where are the messages coming from in the body? Is it the brain itself? Is it the spinal cord? Is it from within the nerves that travel from the old injury to the spinal cord? Do the chemicals released from the tissues around the site of the old injury still engage the nerves and activate the pain channels? Somehow, the body's nervous system is recognizing a problem in the body even though there is no problem there.
When an injury first occurs: The pain signal travels from the nerve ending near the injured structure, to the spinal cord, brain stem, and thalamus. From there, the pain signal travels out to multiple areas of the brain, including the centers for touch, emotion, physical reaction, and memory.