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Most common mistakes in back care
Most common mistakes in back care

5 Back Care Mistakes to Avoid:

Mistake #1: Ignore it for too long

While it’s true that the majority of episodes of back pain will get better on their own, this doesn’t mean that you should ignore it. Rather, when back pain strikes, it’s best to seek appropriate treatment and understand what you can do to prevent future bouts of pain. As an example, when experiencing symptoms from degenerative disc disease or a herniated disc, physical therapy can improve muscle tone, minimize muscle wasting and spasm, and thereby reduce your pain and help you prevent recurrences.

Mistake #2: Rely on your general practitioner for too long

General practitioners don’t have in-depth training in spine medicine, so the diagnosis and/or treatment plan may not be accurate, or it may take a long time. For example, a general practitioner may be inclined to run a battery of diagnostic tests to see what turns up, when just a physical examination and medical history by a spine specialist would clearly indicate a certain condition. In cases such as this, going to a spine specialist would save time and money by avoiding extensive diagnostic testing.

Mistake #3: Have surgery too soon

We often hear from people who view surgery as a 'quick fix' to resolve their pain right away. However, unless the pain is severe and you are having trouble functioning (or have bowel/bladder incontinence or progressive weakness), most surgeons will recommend non-surgical treatment for several weeks or months before considering surgery. While surgery can fix an anatomical lesion, the only way to completely heal is through a sustained exercise program, and it is best to get an individually prescribed set of exercises.

Mistake #4: Postpone surgery for too long

On the other hand, for some conditions patients tend to do better if they have surgery sooner. Whereas this is not necessarily the case for back pain alone, pain and weakness in the arms or legs due to nerve root pinching is often best treated within several months. Waiting longer can prolong the recovery period or can lead to permanent nerve root changes.

Some patients risk suffering from the negative side effects of long-term pain, which can include depression, sleeplessness, and decreased muscle tone, as well as associated problems such as difficulty working and performing everyday normal activities. For such patients, if they have an anatomical lesion amenable to surgical correction, choosing surgery may be a reasonable option to enhance their quality of life.

Mistake #5: Focus too much on the MRI scan

MRI-doctors

While the MRI scan provides a very sensitive and accurate view of spinal anatomy, it cannot distinguish between painful and non-painful structures in your spine. In fact, you may have terrible pain and an MRI scan that shows a relatively normal-looking spine. Thus, the findings on your MRI scan do not provide a diagnosis, and must be correlated with the findings from your physical exam and symptoms for a clinical diagnosis.

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Healthy back

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General information about back pain


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Acute back pain


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Understanding your back


The spine is the central supporting system of our body. It's easy to forget that most of the movements that we make in our daily life the back is involved.

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Chronic back pain


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What causes back pain


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Who is hurt by back pain?


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How stress effects our back?


Twentysomethings who experience lifestyle stress may be increasing their risk for development of back pain in their 30s.

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Body weight impact on your spine


Overweight has a harmful impact on your spine. Extra fat doesn’t do any good to your body. In contrast with muscles which protect joins, extra weight just increases the burden that joints have to carry. That is especially harmful for joints in loin and hips.

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False ideas about back


There are many false ideas about the causes and appropriate treatments for back pain. Unfortunately, these misunderstandings can often lead to unnecessary stress, anxiety and even behavior that can make your back pain worse.

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Facts and figures about back care


Facts and figures about back care give an overview of the total number of people affected by back pain, the associated costs and various other facts and figures.

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