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6 Back Pain Myths Exposed

Since back problems are challenging to diagnose and usually involve an array of treatment options with a number of different risks and benefits, back pain can be a complex topic. Unfortunately, the many myths and common misconceptions about back pain can make the topic even more confusing.

Here at Pacific Spine, we are committed to disproving some of these myths so that you can understand the reality about the causes of back pain and treatment options for individuals suffering from back problems. Some of the most common myths about back pain can be found below.

6 Back Pain Myths Exposed

  1. Back Pain Can Be Alleviated By Eliminating Exercise

Although, it is true that some physical activities such as golf, gymnastics, and volleyball can hurt your back, excluding exercise all together is not a good idea. Regular, moderate physical activity can strengthen your core and spine and reduce your chances of developing back pain. A lack of exercise can cause the muscles to weaken and lead the back to be more prone to injury. Exercises such as yoga, walking, and strength training should be performed regularly to help you gain strength and remain healthy.

  1. Heat and Massages Are Effective Back Pain Treatments

Back massages and heat feel great on a painful back. However, adding heat to the back or massaging it is a short-term solution. The issue of chronic back pain will still exist once the massage is over and the heat is removed. Heat and massages should only be used as a treatment if they are recommended by a doctor.

  1. An MRI is Required to Determine the Cause of Back Pain

Many individuals wrongly believe that an MRI is necessary to determine why they are experiencing back pain. Since back issues are often associated with simple overexertion, no diagnostic test such as an MRI is required. An MRI may not reveal problems for a patient with a back injury.

  1. Surgery is the Only Solution for Back Pain

9 out of 10 patients overcome back pain with conservative treatments. At Pacific Spine, we will start with a non-surgical treatment plan that includes medication, physical therapy, and exercise. Surgery will only be recommended in instances where these conservative treatments fail.

  1. Back Pain is a Normal Aspect of Aging

Back pain is more common as we age. However, this does not mean that older adults should live with uncomfortable back pain. Older individuals with back pain should see a medical professional and take the steps necessary to relieve the pain and live a higher quality of life.

  1. Staying in Bed Can Diminish Back Pain

Those with back pain who stay in bed will weaken and stiffen their muscles. A weak back with stiffness is likely to lead to further back pain. Therefore, performing gentle exercises rather than remaining still in bed can reduce back pain while improving an individual’s mental well-being.

About 80 percent of American will experience back pain at some point in their lives. If you find yourself coping with back pain, contact Pacific Spine today. Our spine experts will educate you on how to properly care for your back and alleviate the pain.

  • Oregon Medical Association
  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • Scoliosis Research Society
  • North American Spine Society