How To Put Your Aching Back Behind You
A group of doctors recently “crunched the numbers” on back operations. The shocking results may just leave you speechless.
From 2002 to 2007, the total number of procedures dropped off slightly. But, in those six years, the rate of one complex lower back procedure shot up by 1,500%!1
That’s not the shocking part, though. You see, the researchers also discovered the more complex procedure may not provide any more relief than simpler approaches.2 But it more than doubles the risk of life-threatening complications!1
In a moment, I’ll reveal several ways to find relief from an aching back. But first, let’s answer an important question.
Why So Many Risky Procedures?
Why are doctors suddenly performing so many of risky and expensive back procedures? I’d like to believe that they think these procedures may give their patients more relief. But the evidence doesn’t bear that out.
An international team from the Mayo Clinic and Britain’s Leicester Royal Infirmary searched through 40 years of studies on lower back discomfort. They found only a “marginal improvement” for people who had invasive procedures over those who didn’t. They called the difference “statistically insignificant” and “of minimal clinical importance.”3
In other words, if your lower back aches, simple, inexpensive answers may be your best bet. Even pampering yourself can help.
Relief Never Felt So Good
Most people think of massage as an indulgence. But when your back is sore, massage may prove remarkably helpful.
In fact, researchers found that massage can promote greater relief than even physical therapy. And a massage left people’s backs feeling better for up to a year afterwards.4
Another alternative for your aching back is acupuncture. A German study published in The Archives of Internal Medicine showed amazing results. People who used acupuncture for their lower backaches felt almost twice the relief of those using conventional approaches.
And, like massage, acupuncture provided long-lasting results. The acupuncture group in this study felt better for up to six months.5
Mother Nature has some effective answers, too.
Ancient Answers for an Aching Back
When you want relief from nagging aches, take a cue from the ancient Romans. They headed for hot sulfur baths.
But you can do the Romans one better. Because you can avoid the rotten egg smell of sulfur. Instead, you can take MSM (Methyl Sufonyl Methane).
Not only is MSM essential for healthy joints – and your spine has plenty of joints – it may promote a slowing of certain “negative” nerve impulses, thus lowering your level of discomfort.4
Nature also gives us white willow bark – a gentle herb that led to the development of aspirin. Several studies have shown it promotes lower levels of discomfort in the back.5
And, finally, here’s one other simple tip for your aching back.
Don’t Let an Aching Back Slow You Down
A throbbing back can really cramp your style. And when you slow down, your muscles may tighten up and grow weaker. That just makes the problem worse. So gentle stretching, along with exercises to strengthen your back, may be just the trick to get you into the fast lane again.
In fact, a recent study of nurses with backaches found that exercise alone was as effective as a “multi-modal” approach involving hours of education, counseling and ergonomics.8
Your doctor should be able to give you safe stretches and back-strengthening exercises. Adding in any of the approaches I’ve outlined above may provide even greater relief.
The bottom line is that nagging discomfort in your back doesn’t have to sideline you. You can get remarkably good results using these safe and simple approaches. And get back to enjoying your life again.
Best Life Herbals Wellness Team
Best Life Herbals
1 Deyo RA, et al. Trends, Major Medical Complications, and Charges Associated With Surgery for Lumbar Spinal Stenosis in Older Adults. JAMA, Vol. 303 No. 13, April 7, 2010.
2 See http://www.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=637784.
3 T. Ibrahim, et al. Surgical versus non-surgical treatment of chronic low back pain: a meta-analysis of randomised trials. International Orthopaedics, Volume 32, Number 1 / February, 2008.
4 Furlan AD, et al. Massage for Low Back Pain: An Updated Systematic Review Within the Framework of the Cochrane Back Review Group. Spine: 15 July 2009 – Volume 34 – Issue 16 – pp 1669-1684.
5 Haake M, et al. German Acupuncture Trials (GERAC) for chronic low back pain: randomized, multicenter, blinded, parallel-group trial with 3 groups. Arch Intern Med. 2007 Sep 24;167(17):1892-8.
6 See http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/sulfur-000328.htm.
7 Gagnier JJ, et al. Herbal medicine for low back pain. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2006 Apr 19;(2):CD004504.
8 Ewert T, et al. The Comparative Effectiveness of a Multimodal Program Versus Exercise Alone for the Secondary Prevention of Chronic Low Back Pain and Disability. PM&R: Volume 1, Issue 9, September 2009, Pages 798-808.