You Can Recover From Back Pain
A new patient phoned today and asked me if I do acupuncture for back pain. His sciatica had become worse and was disturbing his snow skiing and sitting down. It was crucial to his recovery that we began acupuncture treatment immediately. Sciatica or lower back pain is something most acupuncturists have treated at least once. I’ve found nearly every patient that visits my Littleton acupuncture clinic mentions they’ve experienced lumbar pain of some nature.
Littleton Acupuncture For Back Pain
Concerned his pain would become chronic or require surgery he was motivated to invest in improving his health. I assured him that he could do many things to prevent the situation from becoming chronic. As for surgery, always try everything you can before you do this. Surgical procedures are permanent.
Acupuncture is one of the most effective treatments for pain, especially in the back. Most cases are soft tissue or muscle tension. Chinese medicine has a long history of working to relax tight muscles even spasms.
The gentleman’s sigh of relief was almost audible over the phone as he scheduled for the next day.
Types of Back Pain
His name was Sam, and when he arrived, he walked a bit stooped forward. He explained it hurt more to stand straight up to his full 6 foot height. He’d had the same pain some dozen years ago, and it had gone away by itself.
The problem began four weeks ago and felt different. His pain was dull and radiated down the side of his leg. It started in his waistline as he called it. The area was the sacroiliac joint [SI joint] or the bony spot at the waist on the back of the body. It hurt more when pressure was applied to the gluteal muscles confirming it was sciatica. This pressure on the buttock muscle caused the side of his leg to go numb, tingle, and then began to ache. All signs of nerve impingement, which is what sciatic pain, is.
It had started shoving snow just like last time after a big storm. Sam [not his real name], was an active man who wanted to go skiing with all the great snow, but knew that was out of the question.
His medical doctor had done testing. It showed only a minor bulging of a lumbar disc. The doc had told him to take it easy and gave him a muscle relaxer. The pills made Sam sleepy and worse he could not work when taking them.
He decided to try something that would help him heal and stay on the job. His career complicated the problem. He worked in finance and sat at a desk all day, right on the pinched nerve putting pressure on the SI joint.
Littleton Acupuncture And Healthy Habits
Sam began acupuncture treatment twice a week for a few weeks, then once a week, and then bi-monthly for a few more weeks. He was motivated to not cause the bulging disc to displace further and be able to resume skiing next season.
He knew that some healthy habits would need to change. First he would use an alarm on his work computer to signal that he should get out of his chair and stretch. He did this every 30 minutes at first. The plan was to move to every 60 minutes once his back healed.
Also, he started eating inflammation reducing foods. These are alkaline not acidic which cause inflammation in the tissues. He crowded out tomatoes by adding root vegetables like yams. Sam loved fruit, so we concentrated on balancing acidic fruit with alkaline fruits. If he ate an orange [acidic], he added a banana [alkaline].
He loved apple juice every morning. It is a very alkaline food and creates an acid imbalance in the digestion. This was leading to joint inflammation. Using food to heal is natural and free. Sam loved the simple changes.
Next habit, we enhanced, was drinking more water. Sam was not a big water drinker choosing soda more often. After reviewing studies on sugar in pop, he wanted reduce his sodas by one a week and drinking more water. It took him a month to get off diet soda. By then his pain level was down 75%, and he was sleeping better at night a bonus he did not expect.
Acupuncture for back pain alone could have helped Sam. He wanted to learn healthy habits to be at his best too. He’d had a wake-up call about taking better care of himself.
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