Listen to our physiotherapist Claire busting a few myths about back pain…

Many people book in to see physiotherapists with back pain. Everyone will experience back pain at least once in their life. It can be debilitating and at times frightening. This blog aims to demystify back pain and to correct some myths that exist around back pain and how it is best managed.

1. MOVING WILL MAKE MY BACKPAIN WORSE

Following an episode of backpain people tend to stop moving. This can be due to fear of provoking the pain but is also a natural reaction the body has to pain itself. Twisting and bending are two movements that are especially avoided.

It is true that with back pain movements are uncomfortable however it is important for your recovery to remain as active as you can gradually increasing your activity levels. It is well established that returning to movement and work as soon as you are able, is better for recovery and preventing recurrence than bed rest.

2. I SHOULD AVOID EXERCISE, ESPECIALLY WEIGHT TRAINING.

Continuing with the activities that you enjoy doing is an important part of your recovery. The activity may need modified but you should continue as able. Evidence has shown that there is no one exercise alone that is better for your back than any other, so the best activity to choose to do is the one that you enjoy. That includes weight training.

3. A SCAN WILL SHOW ME EXACTLY WHAT IS WRONG.

If all of the population had back investigations most of us would have changes on a scan or X-ray. However most of us do not have symptoms of back pain. Research has shown that findings on scans correlate poorly to symptoms that people with back pain experience and therefore are not useful in managing back pain in a lot of the population. Due to the complexity of how the body and brain interpret pain a scan alone isn’t capable of telling us why a person is experiencing pain.

4.PAIN EQUALS DAMAGE

Traditionally this has been the thinking within medicine. However more recent research has demonstrated that a pain experience is complex. It can be affected by past experiences, beliefs, sleep and exercise levels. Physiotherapy aims to treat each patient as a whole managing the person and THEIR pain experience.

If you are experiencing back pain and would like an assessment book into Physio Inverness here