Have you been experiencing ongoing back pain that has been going away then coming back again? Well, this is a common occurrence because your body is compensating and adapting to physical and repetitive stresses.
The saying that “one thing leads to another” is sometimes true about an injury. An injury to a foot or leg can cause someone to limp, putting more weight on the opposite leg and changing their posture.
Over time, this can cause pain symptoms in the uninjured leg and hip, further in your lower back, and at the end in the neck. In time your foot is healed the person stays with chronic neck pain.
Similarly, an injury to someone’s dominant arm can cause them to overuse the opposite arm, eventually resulting in symptoms in that arm. Any kind of physical injury that causes pain, disability, and loss of income can affect someone’s mental health, resulting in a diagnosis of depression, anxiety, or adjustment disorder.
Domino Starts – Compensation Effect
Patterns of compensation can develop for many reasons. This can be due to previous injuries, daily activities, or repetitive stressors, such as repeated heavy lifting, poor posture, or carrying heavy loads. Your body compensates for the lack of movement in one area by adding a new movement. Compensation and adapting to physical stresses happen over time.
For example, if you have low back pain on the right-hand side of your body. Your body does not want to further aggravate that area; therefore, you may start to lean towards the left-hand side more to avoid putting any further pressure on it. You may also start to notice that the muscles become tighter on the right due to the pulling across to the left and side and joints become stiffer.
The muscles in your body will create new patterns, causing these muscles to work incorrectly, and therefore, pain may intensify or persist. This forms compensation patterns in your body to try to decrease the pain. This is like a domino effect, where the pain will continue to come back when your body keeps trying to compensate for not addressing the source of the pain.
It can also be due to posture. If you are sitting in front of a computer, driving, or standing for a long period of time, you might notice a lot of pressure and pain in your neck, middle back, and lower back from your body being in a hunched-like position. Therefore, the pain in your back continues to reoccur because of your posture that you have adapted over time and has not been corrected.
Stopping the domino effect
Not addressing the source of the pain can influence the recurrence of pain and cause pain in totally different areas. There are many reasons as to why the pain has been brought on such as poor posture, repetitive stressors, underlying health conditions, and pre-existing injuries.
What can be done about it?
Seeking medical advice early. Seeking medical advice early can decrease the likelihood of any further injuries occurring, as well as prevent the worsening of pain.
Getting regular spinal health checks from a Chiropractor can help minimise the chances of recurring back pain. Like going to the dentist for a regular check-up and cleaning prevents tooth decay, it is important to get your spinal health checked.
Not ignoring early signs such as those niggles or stiffness felt in your back. Starting early care can potentially help correct the underlying issue/cause faster than waiting too long.
It is important to address the underlying cause of the pain because the location of where the pain is felt might not necessarily be the source of the pain. Therefore, getting to the cause of the pain may help the pain not come back as often or even at all.
You should seek medical advice when you experience the following signs and symptoms:
- Numbness, tingling, sharp or shooting pain down your arms or legs
- Persistent pain lasting more than 3 months
- Pain progressively getting worse
- Pain increasing in intensity, duration, and frequency
- Persistent pain that is not relieved by rest
- Suddenly waking you up at night
- Sudden changes to bowel or bladder
If you are not getting to the underlying cause of the pain or recognising the patterns of compensation, it can increase the risk of injury and damage to the body. Therefore, the pain may continue to come back and go away repeatedly. The longer we wait to get care, the longer it will take for the body to heal.
Reverse the domino effect
The domino effect describes a chain reaction that occurs when a small event triggers a reaction nearby, setting off another reaction, then another, until it produces an ultimate result. Getting your health back with Chiropractic care happens in a similar way.
Chiropractors start the process with a small event called an Adjustment. Spinal adjustments restore Ease in your nerve system which promotes Healing. Over Time your body literally Recreates itself… replacing sick, damaged cells and tissues with stronger, healthier ones. You experience improvements in the way your body Performs like stronger immunity, deeper sleep, greater physical energy, and a confident sense of wellbeing. The result is more expression of LIFE.
The goal of Chiropractic is to help you experience the abundance of LIFE inside you – so you can fulfill your purpose and bring more joy to those around you. Staying ‘lined up’ with regular Chiropractic care is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and those you love the most.