Does your back ever hurt? For over a decade, I struggled with lower back pain that would get a bit better, but never really go away. Over the years, I visited an acupuncturist, naturopaths, consulted MDs, received countless massages, and even tried a few chiropractors. None of them solved my problem, though some helped manage the pain. Upon a friend’s advice, I went to yet another chiropractor here in Beijing who recommended I wear heal lifts – for the rest of my life – and had me visiting twice a week. I gave it two months and simply stopped going. I figured if they cannot eliminate the problem in two months, I’m not counting on them for a cure.
Dejected, I shared my tale of woe with a youth group one day and one of them said I should simply go see his dad. I didn’t have much faith, but I was willing to get a second opinion on the treatment I had been receiving – especially the lifts.
I cannot say that I instantly knew I had found the man with the plan, but after he spent 20 minutes examining my x-rays and calculating his treatment, I could tell something was different about this chiropractor. There was no, “Now I’m going to crack your back!” The treatment consisted of one adjustment to my neck with not much more pressure than typing on a keyboard with vigor (okay, maybe a bit more, but it wasn’t painful or extreme). Basically, I had been suffering for over a decade because no one had properly diagnosed the cause of my lower back pain, which was, naturally, in the neck.
It turns out if you torque the spine in the neck, it can cause discomfort all the way down the spinal cord, sending out the feeling of pain and discomfort where there really is nothing wrong – like my lower back, hips, and knees. After three or four gentle adjustments, my problem simply went away. In fact, with each treatment, I could literally feel a release all down my back. I’ve returned a few times for adjustments in the past year, like when I bumped my head on a doorway, but usually one visit does the trick and, if I take care of my neck, the pain in my back stays away.
I’ve been loath to write about this, as I don’t want to struggle to get an appointment, but this is too good not to share. Chiropractic care can work, but like any form of medicine, you need to find a doctor who knows what they are doing and has your best interests at heart. Dr Hinson at Beijing United Family Hospital helped me overcome my pain and has even helped a number of my friends now. He even told me to throw away the lifts! If you’ve got back pain, it’s worth your while to schedule a visit and get a second opinion like I did.
Photo by JD_na of Flickr.