When it comes to neck pain or any pain for that matter and you go to see your doctor he will normally spend an hour or so with you. He will give you some massage for about twenty minutes, heat packs to ease muscular tension, talk to you about your posture and the effect it has on neck pain, show you how to do some self myofacial release techniques to ease neck pain and give you a whole host of other information about how you can remove the causes of your neck pain to help you become Pain free.
If you are reading this and have seen a doctor for your neck pain I will almost guarantee you that this is how your visit site:
You walk in and waited for what seemed like eternity, you finally finish waiting and get out of the ‘waiting room’ because its now your chance to see the doctor. Sure, its now 30 minutes later than your scheduled appointment but that’s what is considered normal when seeing a doctor. You have to wait. The you see the doctor, he may press around your neck somewhat for a few moments, tell you that you have lots of tension and you are given a long list of drugs to take, muscle relaxants, pain killers and anti inflammatories. You are told to see how that goes and if you are no better you will be then prescribed stronger pain killers, perhaps now steroidal ones and maybe even some new ‘nerve healing’ drugs whether you have nerve impingement or not.
If that doesn’t work, then you will probably be recommended to see an orthopaedic surgeon who will ask for an xray or, if you have good insurance or look like you can afford it, schedule an MRI to see whats going on. The problem with getting an MRI or an xray is that it can show degenerative changes and/or disc bulges but this too does not mean that your pain is coming from these structures. You could have a MRI and it shows disc bulges at C6-7(for example) and he recommends that you have surgery( with him of course) when the pain is coming from several trigger points in your sub occipital muscles- a few good trigger point sessions with a good myofacial therapist and corrective postural advice would have been your answer instead of surgery.
In fact, 95% of people over the age of 60 have degenerative changes in their necks. Its simply wear and tear which may or may not be causing you pain-and more often than not is not causing your pain. When you look at the major cause of neck pain on any website you will see consistently that the major cause is postural-this should immediately give you a heads up to your pain. the first question I would have for you is ‘is your pain worse when you are at the computer or driving or reading?’ If the answer is yes to any of these I would immediately start looking at fixing your posture to help ease your pain.
But lets take a look at what you are doing when you take painkillers to help your pain.
If you have pain coming from poor posture(the most common cause) which is straining your ligaments, pushing your discs against nerves and causing chronic muscular pain and tension what is a pain killer doing to help this?
Is a Pain Killer Getting to the Cause of your problems?
No. in fact, its allowing you to get away with your bad habits which is making your problems worse in the long run. The same goes for those of you who suffer from lower back pain. if your lower back pain is caused from sitting badly in your chair at the computer and/or lifting badly then taking a pain killer is just allowing you to mask the bad habits and is setting you up for a big injury.
Pain is your warning system that something is wrong!
And what are you doing to your body’s natural warning system that is there to help you?
I don’t know about you but I think this is just a little bit STUPID!!!!
Think About this for a Moment:
You are driving along in your nice Mercedes car and your oil light comes on whilst you are driving. You know that the oil light coming on is your cars way of telling you that the engine has a problem-it’s the cars warning system so that you don’t do major damage to your engine which will cost you thousands more if you don’t do something about it. So what do you do?
Of course you go to a mechanic to see what is wrong. However, your mechanic says he will tape some masking tape over the oil light on the dash board so that you can no longer see the light anymore. He tells you to come back in two weeks if you still have a problem.
Now, you may not know much about mechanics and cars but you do know that putting masking tape over the oil light so that you can no longer see the light has not fixed the problem and that you will still have this problem in two weeks. You also know that if it doesn’t get fixed properly( by fixing the cause) you will do some major damage to your engine. This will then cost you thousands!
Anyone See a Pattern Emerging Here?
But wait I hear you cry, my car is worth thousands of dollars and I wouldn’t put it at risk. It cost me a lot of money I hear you say and you wouldn’t be that stupid I hear you tell me. Hmm..ever wondered just how much you have spent on your body over the years? Food, clothing, education, health-shall I go on?
Your body is the most sophisticated, most expensive thing you own. And you are happy to just tape over your body’s oil light time and time again by taking pain killers and hoping that the pain will go away. There is a much better way.
Remove the causes of your pain. Fix the problem rather than masking the symptoms. For this you need to know what is causing your pain first and foremost rather than guessing and hoping right? Right. For more on this read these articles to become more aware of how to fix your own pain.