If you’ve ever experienced back pain – and most of us have – you’ll know how debilitating it can be. And if the thought of taking a road trip makes you wince… or stooping to pick up your grandson poses the very real possibility that you mightn’t ever straighten out again… you might think drugs or surgery are the smart option.
But there’s a very credible school of thought that says backache has nothing to do with busted discs or spinal injury. And the good news is that you can find relief and strengthen your back without costly and sometimes dangerous spinal surgeries.
A Pain in the Back
Did you know that up to 90 percent of Americans will experience back, neck, or shoulder pain during their lifetime? That’s a lot of people suffering backache. In fact, we spent over $30 billion on back-related medical and surgical costs in 2005 alone.
It’s odd that we have state-of-the-art science, cutting-edge procedures… and yet back pain still seems to outfox us. We’re spending a large fortune on treating back pain and yet we’re simply not beating it. Half the people who have expensive spinal surgery seem worse of after than before. So… perhaps we’re not fixing the problem because we haven’t actually identified the true cause.
Certainly that’s what leader-in-the-field Dr. John Sarno thought when he wrote Mind Over Back Pain – an alternative take on understanding backache. He based the book on the results of a series of clinical studies that he conducted.
He treated hundreds of patients and documented his results accordingly. And he became convinced that back pain had very little to do with herniated discs and spinal injury. His studies taught him that nervous tension is the catalyst that sets off back pain.
And through further research, he discovered that blood circulation was the cause. When muscles were deprived of their normal supply of blood, the result was back pain.
Dr. Sarno began treating people who were previously diagnosed with busted discs. Once he had examined them, and satisfied himself that they didn’t have a busted disc, he set about treating them for TMS. He didn’t use surgery or drugs… and patients enjoyed a full recovery!
As more patients made progress with non-surgical treatment he became convinced that TMS was indeed the true cause of backache. He put his theory to the test through several studies.
He treated patients according to his TMS theory and his results were incredible! About 85 percent of his patients showed complete recovery. And all of them without surgery or drugs.
To find out more about TMS you can sign up for our health newsletter here. Each month we focus on a specific issue and reveal the best research and most recent findings in health. As a bonus for signing up, we’ll give you a free report on back health… one that investigates the true cause of back pain and spells out Dr. Sarno’s TMS theory. If after 60 days you decide you’d like to unsubscribe from the newsletter, you get your money back and still get to keep the free back report. Click here to sign up.
“The successfully treated patients were living normal lives with no physical restrictions,” says Dr. Sarno. “Most were engaged in aerobic exercise and vigorous sports.”
Dr. Sarno published his findings and that opened the door to a new way of looking at back pain. And a whole generation of doctors began looking for alternative remedies for backache.
They came up with a whole battery of options… heat therapy… yoga… stretching exercises… diet changes. Even the amount – and type – of water you drink can make a difference to your back health. None of their options required drugs or surgery… and they delivered great results.
Stretching for Health
When we’re children we never seemed to have back problems. There were no twinges or aches… we bounced around all over the place and we didn’t throw out any discs or rupture anything.
Likewise, do you know any people who can touch their knees with their nose who have back problems? Increasing flexibility could be the answer to restoring good back health.
Here’s one simple routine that should improve your flexibility.
- Sit up with your legs straight out. Slowly try bending forward to touch your toes. Hold for about 5 seconds and repeat 10 times.
- While sitting up turn your torso to the left and then to the right. Repeat 10 times.
- While laying flat on your back, bend your right knee, grab it with both hands, and try bringing it up to your chest. Hold for a few seconds and then release. Repeat with your left leg. Repeat 10 times.
Stretching your back can really make a difference in alleviating pain. But there are many experts who believe that yoga and Pilates can actually align posture and repair your back.
We’ll be publishing a follow-up story on yoga and Pilates in a coming issue of NHD "Health Watch".
To your health,
NHD “Health Watch”