Two Things You Should Do If You Don’t Want Back Pain.

12 Mar

It’s funny how the more we learn about ourselves and the world around us, the more established “facts” turn out to be completely wrong and the opposite of what is “true.” For example, new research concludes that people with low back pain will achieve greater benefits by exercising more, not less.

In a study done by the University of Alberta on 240 men and women with chronic lower back pain showed, those who exercised 4 days a week had a better quality of life, 28 percent less pain, and 36 percent less disability. Those who hit the gym only 2 or 3 days a week did not show the same level of change.

“While it could be assumed that someone with back pain should not be exercising frequently, our findings show that working with weights 4 days a week provides the greatest amount of pain relief and quality of life,” said Robert Kell, lead author of the study and an Assistant Professor of Exercise and Physiology at the University of Alberta, Augustana Campus.

Here is something really important from the study… The participants were split into four groups of 60. One group exercised with weights 2 days a week, another 3 days a week, and a third group 4 days a week. The fourth group did not exercise with weights.

All groups were tracked for 16 weeks. At the end of the 16 weeks, the level of pain reportedly decreased by 28% in the 4-day a week group, by 18% in the 3- day a week group, and by 14% in the 2-day a week group.

So What Does This Mean To You?

It depends. Every case of back pain is individual and you should not just run out today and start lifting weights. That could be a disaster.

If you have back pain, your first move should be to get a complete examination by a qualified doctor who treats back pain every day.

Chiropractors are specially trained to diagnose and treat low back pain and can tell you what the probable cause of your back pain is and the best treatment methods for your individual case.

But clearly, for many low back sufferers, exercise is a very good thing.

Now for something else that can possibly help your back pain…

As If Lung Cancer Wasn’t Bad Enough…

For quite some time, researchers have known that smoking is a risk factor for chronic pain disorders. More specifically, smoking has been linked to increased risk for low back pain, spinal disk problems, and poor outcome after surgery.

Now, a new study published in the December 2012 issue of The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery found that smokers suffering from spinal disorders and related back pain reported greater discomfort than spinal disorder patients who stopped smoking during an eight-month treatment period.

The study analyzed the pain reported by more than 5,300 patients with back pain and related conditions.

The results as reported in Science Daily: “At the time of entry into care, patients who had never smoked and prior smokers reported significantly less back pain than current smokers and those who had quit smoking during the study period. Current smokers reported significantly greater pain in all visual analog scale (VAS) pain ratings — worst, current and average weekly pain — when compared with patients who had never smoked.”

It was also noted that patients who quit smoking reported greater improvement than those who continued to smoke and the group that continued to smoke had no reported improvement in pain.

The leading author of the study said that nicotine increases pain. According to the study, if you quit smoking, your condition should improve. If you continue to smoke, you may see no improvement, regardless of what treatment you receive. If you smoke, you are dramatically decreasing your chances of getting better from any treatment, including surgery.

Here is the conclusion of the study: “Given a strong association between improved patient-reported pain and smoking cessation, this study supports the need for smoking cessation programs for patients with a painful spinal disorder.”

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