– If you want more top tips to ease back pain, look here: www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain
Imagine if we met…
Let’s say you and I were introduced to each other by a mutual friend, and when you realised I was a Physiotherapist, I’d bet the first question you’d ask me would go something like this:
“Oh you’re a Physio are you… whilst you’re here then, can I just ask you a quick question – what’s the best thing to do for my bad back…?”
(Or what ever it is you were suffering from…)
Because it happens nearly everywhere I go.
And it’s really nice to be honest. I Never get tired of being able to help people and ending back pain, well, it’s often just a simple case of “do this, but don’t do that…”
And my first response to that type of question is NOT to tell the person asking “what to do”…
It’s to tell them “what NOT to do”. Simply eliminating the things that make problems worse, usually makes a significant difference before I even have to go and do anything by hand (in the Physio Room).
So, with that in mind, here are…
1.) Do not rely upon painkillers – doing so means you’ll NEVER get to the root cause of back pain in the first place. Most people agree that painkillers aren’t the best option – yet the GP’s still give them out.
And in the right situation, I think that’s completely fine. But along with a prescription that offers some temporary relief, the person writing that prescription should be telling the person cashing that prescription, that painkillers will not fix the problem. They can not get the bottom of or solve the root cause. For that too happen, something like a specialist physio must be soihgt.
And you know what? If they did that, and give a simple piece of advice that would make all the difference, many people WOULD go and source specialist advice. And if they did that, not only would we have a nation that would be more active and healthy, we’d be more positive, more educated and better informed and able to look after our best assess – our health.
Instead, people are forgiven for taking GP word as gospel (why wouldn’t they) and so leave the GP surgery thinking that all that can be done is to try some painkillers and if nothing can be done, then they must suffer.
But it’s total nonsense and I have long wished that GP’s would put an extra few seconds in there consultation rooms to clarify what exactly should be done to get to the root cause of back pain.
2.) Doing wrong/generic exercises at the wrong time – I see this all the time and most people I meet with back pain have admitted to me that they’ve tried exercises before they arrive for treatment. And most times, they’ve made their own problems worse because they’ve been doing the wrong exercises, for the wrong reasons.
In my experience, exercises do very little to ease back pain. They do however, make it less likely to come back. But that’s something that most people don’t get. It’s best NOT to do exercises when you’re in pain as you’re only going to make things worse, yet nearly everyone who has got back pain thinks it’s the best thing to do.
Physio and posture advice first, then come the exercises to make your body stronger and you less likely to suffer again any time soon. My tip for exercises that make back pain less likely – Pilates, mixed with a touch of Yoga to make your back more flexible.
3.) Wear a neoprene back support – wearing one of these everyday will weaken the muscles around your lower back meaning that within three months, maybe less, your lower back is going to be in a worse state than it was before you started wearing one.
It’s very similar to resting for too long. Sure, it feels nice when you start to wear it, and that’s the problem. It’s so easy to lured into a false sense of security because of a drop in pain. But what happens is this: every time you don’t wear it, back pain becomes worse. And so you think that your must wear the support again, for a few more days at least or until the pain is gone. So you try to avoid wearing it again for a day or so, but the pain is worse still. and so the self perpetuating cycle continues until your a bonafied member of the life long back pain club. And trust me…. there’s better clubs to join that one because it’s not so nice.
4.) Sitting for long periods – 9 out of 10 back problems are made WORSE by sitting. What most people don’t know is that back pain is made worse by sitting. And another thing that most people don’t know is we’re not really designed to sit at all.
And that’s a problem – because if you think about how much we now sit, be it in the car, to watch TV, at a deal at work, in the cinema or on the train etc etc etc, then it’s not difficult to work out what so many people aged 50+ are struggling with back pain. Try to cut this out and you will see a gradual drop in back pain.
Here’s a simple tip that I use myself: Next time your phone rings or you know you’re going to be on the phone for a while – take a walk whilst you’re doing it. It’s great for mental stimulation, takes some pressure off your lower back and is great for your heart and lungs.
And what ever you are chatting about on the phone will seem so much more positive and the person you’re talking too will wonder why you’ve got so much energy and enthusiasm in your voice. I do this all the time and find it works great for important business calls I need to make.
So there you have it.. 4 things to avoid if you want to ease back pain.
There’s more tips here: www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain
Here’s my last tip: From what you’ve just read I’m sure that you’ll agree – the most valuable part of you going to see a Specialist Physio isn’t necessarily JUST to get the “hands on” treatment.(Although that’s VERY important…).
No, it’s he clarity and the hope for a future that CAN be free from things like back, knee and neck pain, which you’ll find, should not be underestimated.You going to see a Specialist Physio will mean an end to confusion, solid answers to concerning questions, an accurate diagnosis AND an expected time frame for a full recovery.
For most people who come visit me suffering and wanting it to stop, they can put up with it…”They just don’t want too”. (Enjoying their health means the world to them…) And so what they really want from me is an END to the fear and the frustration of not knowing what’s going wrong.
Once you know that, wouldn’t you agree it’s much easier to enjoy life again knowing that someone knows what’s wrong AND that they’re able to do something about it?
If you want more tips to ease back pain, look here: www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain
Hope this help 😉
Specialist Physio Clinics : Darlington – Durham – Guisborough – Hartlepool
Tel: 01429 866771
You might know Paul as an expert Columnist who writes weekly health articles for TWO of the North East's biggest daily Newspapers, The Northern Echo And The Hartlepool Mail, he is a regular Speaker at Industry Seminars around the globe and a Radio Personality, often heard on the BBC. Paul has been an expert guest on dozens of Radio shows and regularly interviewed in newspapers, magazines and trade journals all over the world, including the Guardian.
Paul’s background included working extensively in the Premier League with a Top Professional Football Team, and since quitting his job in Professional Football in 2007, his Physio Practice has become the fastest growing in the UK and biggest in the North East. So successful, that companies like BUPA, ASDA, The Vela Group And Coast & Country, repeatedly retain his Physio company's services to keep healthy their own staff and workforce. Paul Gough Physio Rooms is now a large multi-physio, multi clinic speciality practice in Darlington, Durham, Guisborough and Hartlepool.
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