The human skeleton is unique in the animal world, and it has some key differences even from those of our closest animal relatives. Millions of years ago, our primate ancestors gave up their treebound lifestyle for a life of running and hunting game, and that required a bipedal form. The human skeleton features an S-shaped spine (instead of a smooth curve), an upright pelvis, long leg bones, and arched feet. This offers many advantages, though walking upright means spending a lifetime fighting gravity rather acutely, and that can take its toll. Today around the world, millions of people suffer from chronic back pain, and that includes the United States, too. Serious cases of spinal injuries or back issues may call for surgery, but many other cases are not that severe and can instead be treated with rehab tools and systems in a hospital. Not only that, but back adjustment tools, chiropractic adjusting tools, and other physical therapy tools can help doctors and therapists clear up back pain without needing to perform surgery. How might back adjustment tools get the job done? And what is there to know about back pain today?
Back Pain Frequency and Causes
Many studies and surveys are done every year to keep track of American public health, and the numbers show that back pain and spinal distress are common among Americans. One in three women and one in four men may experience it, and around 50% of all working Americans admit that they sometimes get back pain. Experts also estimate that around 80% of the population may experience back pain at some point in their lives, and at any given time, around 31 million Americans are dealing with back pain.
What is causing all of this back pain? Some surveyed Americans blamed ongoing stress for their back pain, and pregnant women may experience back or spinal pain during their pregnancies. Years of hard work in manual labor jobs, such as construction, can also lead to back pain due to wear and tear. Suffering an injury, such as a sports injury, can also distress the back or spine with sudden trauma. Serious cases may call for surgery, but many cases can instead be treated with non invasive medicine, such as back adjustment tools, as mentioned above.
Getting Treatment for a Bad Back
If a person is experiencing pain in their lower back or their spine, they can visit their doctor and explain their symptoms. This is quite common, and in fact back pain is the second most frequent reason why Americans visit their doctor, behind only upper respiratory problems. A patient’s doctor may then refer them to a chiropractor or a yoga studio for treatment, no surgery needed. In some cases, not even medication may be necessary.
A chiropractor is a specialized doctor who can use their bare hands and basic back adjustment tools to readjust a patient’s bones and muscles without breaking the skin. Doing this can relieve pressure on pinched nerves and distressed joints, and this can clear up pain while also restoring the patient’s flexibility and arcs of motion. Americans spent around $14 billion each year on chiropractic treatment like this. Similarly, a patient may sign up for private sessions at a yoga studio, and with a yoga expert’s guidance, the patient may perform a variety of poses and stretches. This can relieve pressure on joints, muscles, and nerves, which may clear up pain and restore flexibility over the course of several sessions.
In a hospital, a patient may undergo physical therapy, or PT, with the help of physical therapists. This patient may practice walking, perform poses, and more. For example, the patient may stretch out long elastic bands to test their arcs of motion, muscle strength, and their pain threshold, a useful reference for the therapists. Not only that, but motion capture cameras can track a patient’s movements, and the range of motion data will help therapists study the patient’s recovery. Handheld adjustment or muscle testing devices can be used on the body, focusing on one small area at a time. All of this is important for determining a patient’s rate of recovery and when they can be released.