A few years ago, the Institute of Medicine researched & reported that an estimated 116 million Americans live with chronic pain. Other studies show that around 60 million of those people suffer specifically from lower back pain. Statistically speaking, that means about 38%, or around 2/5, of you are dealing with pain that has lasted longer than three months. While there are a number of causes for chronic pain—and different treatments for different pain sources, physical therapy can help with a LOT of various types of chronic pain.
Some of the most common reasons to seek physical therapy treatment are these:
• You were in an accident. Even if immediately after an accident, you don’t feel much pain, it may begin to mount days, weeks, even months later. It is always a good idea to get checked out after an accident—and an even better idea to seek professional help at the first sign of pain. Early treatment can not only help alleviate pain earlier, but help prevent additional issues caused by the original injury.
• You have a sports-related or athletic injury. This can include pulled muscles, broken bones, dislocations, and ligament and tendon issues from a variety of sports injuries like a bad tackle in football, years of pitching baseball, runner’s knees and tennis elbow.
• You have a Repetitive Stress Injury (or an RSI). Recently, we wrote a blog about what RSIs are and how physical therapy can help. They often stem from poor ergonomic positioning at work or repetitive motions at a job—but can also include some athletic injuries like tennis elbow. Like all chronic pain, addressing it earlier can help stave off additional injuries!
• You have neck, shoulder, or back pain. Sometimes, pain just starts—and it builds. You may not be able to pinpoint the moment it started, or when it started to build—but you know you’ve had trouble bending over, sitting for a long period of time, or lifting things for at least a few months. This can stem from accidents, athletics, RSIs, and many other health issues.
At the end of the day, if you’re in chronic pain, you should seek help. Please feel free to give Action Reaction Physical Therapy a call. We provide free 5-10 minute phone consultations in order to figure out what may be going on with you and what the next step for you may be (go see the physical therapist directly or go see a physician or other medical professional who can better suit your needs). We can discuss possible treatment approaches that will not only help you alleviate pain, but correct the cause of it, and teach you how to avoid it in the future!