by Dr. Emil Tompkins, a family chiropractor with a passion for family health and wellness.
You’re out in your garden, bending and twisting to pick weeds, or plant flowers and suddenly, you can’t get up. The muscles in your spine have seized and you cannot move. No matter what you do nothing seems to help. Do you use ice or heat? Do you take medications to stop the pain even though you know there are issues with that too. do you do exercises? It’s hard to imagine exercising when you hurt so much. the questions come quickly and you need answers quickly.
While our office is a family wellness Chiropractic office, people come into our office with this situation daily and there are some clear and simple steps to improve your painful condition.
Step 1: Gain a clear understanding of the problem: This is vitally important. If you place heat on an acute muscle tear, initially you’ll feel better but you’ll create more swelling and pain that will last longer. Getting a clear understanding of what’s causing your problem will help you to take care of it in the right way. We will do a thorough evaluation to help determine the cause of the underlying problem.
Step 2: Make corrective changes to improve the underlying cause of the problem. This generally will happen with chiropractic adjustments. This can help because during injuries, the spine slightly shifts out of position, putting pressure along the spinal nerve roots. This pressure causes the nerves to decrease in their function. This decrease in function leads to pain, muscle spasm, and an overall decrease in the level of health of any tissues that are fed by that particular nerve root. Gentle adjustments can slowly return the disrupted spinal segments to a normal position (if that’s your problem) and help you feel better quickly.
Step 3: Promote fast tissue healing. There are specific supplements that will help your body respond much better to injury. When you use these herbal and vitamin combinations, your body’s inflammatory levels decrease dramatically and you’ll notice decreased pain immediately. Metagenics has a product called acute phase that combines 3 vitamins and minerals and 12 herbal combinations that will provide relief of your acute pain. Here are just a couple of the highlights.
- Magnesium and calcium: these minerals in the right combination will help your muscles to relax and stop spasming
- Boswellia: this herb along with curcumin have been studied to have powerful anti inflammatory effects. All without the side effects of traditional anti-inflammatories.All inflammatory conditions, rheumatic, arthritic (especially Rheumatoid), fibromyalgia, Crohn’s, inflammation associated with IBS and various cancers respond to boswellia supplementation. Very Important: Boswellic acids (active compounds in Boswellia Complex) are most effective when combined with dietary fats for reducing inflammation.
- Turmeric: also decreases the pain of inflammation and has been studied to relief sprains, strains and other musculoskeletal conditions. The other benefits of turmeric are:
- provide antioxidant activity
- support healthy liver function and bile secretion
- support and enhance the proper breakdown of dietary fats
- promote normal platelet function and circulation in a normal system
- support and maintain cellular health
- promote the body’s normal, protective response to environmental stresses
- maintain and support healthy joints
- cayenne pepper: has analgesic properties to decrease the feeling of pain.
- Valerian Root: Has relaxation properties to help muscles relax and give you an overall feeling of calm. It can also help with sleeping if the pain is keeping you awake.
These among many others are going to help you decrease pain during the initial phase. the acute phase of your injury.
Step 4: Stretch. when muscles are injured in a spasm, you can relieve them with specific stretches. Make sure you have your chiropractor or other health care provider, give you some specific stretches for your specific needs.
Step 5: Make sure you get enough rest. Sleep is your body’s time to heal. There is no good excuse for you to get minimal sleep when you are in pain. Inside the acute phase supplement package is Valerian root, which has been shown to help people in pain sleep.
Follow these 5 steps and you’ll be on your way to eliminating your back pain in the acute injury period. In the next article, we’ll talk about the steps to strengthen and stabilize the injured area.
Dr. Emil Tompkins