Orem Chiropractor Discusses Back Pain & The Brain

About 85 percent of the American population will experience disabling, low back pain at least once during their life. The problem is so bad that, at any one time, 6.8 percent of the U.S. adult population is suffering from an episode of back pain that has been going on for more than two weeks. That’s a lot of bad backs.

The estimated cost of this problem in the U.S. is over $50 billion a year. http://www.newsweek.com/id/110767

Even uncomplicated cases of back pain can cost upwards of $8000. Care for these cases can include muscle relaxers, painkillers, rest, physical therapy & minor surgery. Costs for more complicated cases that includes fusion surgery can balloon up to $17,000. However, these approaches have not been found very helpful. Some studies suggest spinal surgeries should be performed only rarely. Many people who have had back surgery report a recurrence of their symptoms within a year or two of the operation and may return to the operating table. In some cases, the surgery makes no difference whatsoever.

The reason many surgeries don’t bring lasting results is because they don't address what back problems do to the brain.

http://www.northwestern.edu/newscenter/stories/2004/11/chronic.html

The cerebellum is a part of the brain that controls all of your postural muscles around the spine. When it functions correctly it keeps our posture upright and our back muscles toned and flexible.

So here’s what happens . . . a person experiences one or more types of stress.

Remember, stress can be physical (injury, accident, bending/twisting) chemical (junk food, cigarette smoke, toxins) ormental (job, relationships, finances).

Stress, no matter what kind of stress, causes the release of stress hormones. If the stress is a big enough stress or goes on long enough stress hormones will reach a level where they become toxic to the cerebellum, causing it to malfunction.

When the cerebellum malfunctions you'll notice muscle tightness around the spine and your posture will be less upright (slouching).
When these muscles are in a constant state of tension joint movement is decreased. Reduced joint movement leads to decay and degeneration of the bones and discs of the spine. This is when discs bulge or herniate.
So maybe you're thinking "well, all I have to do is eliminate my stress and my pain will go away." For you that might work. For the rest of us though it's about changing how our brain and body respond to the stress.

You can keep taking your ibuprofen or other medications for back pain . . . you can keep doing your back exercises . . . you can keep getting a massage . . . you can keep doing all sorts of other things for your back pain (these are all good things and I have recommend them before), but you'll never get lasting back pain relief until the underlying problem in the cerebellum is resolved.

So the secret to eliminating chronic back pain is seeing your Orem Chiropractor to correct dysfunction in the cerebellum.

Questions?

Contact me at 801-225-1311 or drned@askdrned.com