Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Reason for the Quiet

I have not been blogging lately (really, only re-posting interesting things I've seen) because of health reasons.

It's not that serious: I just hurt my back (I am not quite sure how; I think the pain began after I sat on the couch one afternoon--something I really never do--to keep my flu-ish daughter company). 

This new back pain, which has been ongoing for about three weeks, makes it very difficult for me to sit in a chair. It also makes it difficult to write or do any computer work. 

I have always been one of those people who thought of others who complained of back pain, "Oh, get over it. You have to keep moving or it will only get worse!" Back pain sufferers were, I always thought, a bit whiny. 

Now, I have empathy. Now, I understand. When back pain strikes, everything is hard. 

Grocery shopping is very difficult right now. So is reaching for the sea salt in a tall cabinet. So is putting on socks or standing up from a supine position.

I think the back pain is easing (it's not as bad as it was, not hardly), but just when I think it's almost gone, it comes back. I am really not sure if it's a pinched nerve, or arthritis, or what.

If you have any words of wisdom, do share. Trust me, I know all the exercises.I do the Tibetan Seven. I use a heating pad. I take joint pain supplements. I think I need a new bed, but aside from that (and realizing that sitting makes the pain worse), I am out of ideas.

I have not seen a chiropractor since I felt that the chiro I saw 10 years ago basically ripped me off. I have seen a masseuse a couple of times. I think that helped, but I know that the issue is still there, inside somewhere.

Anyway, enough about my back! If you have back pain, I sincerely do empathize. You might try what I've tried, in case it helps you. In the meantime, I will blog again with a vengeance when my tailbone can stand it. 


  1. My sympathies! I suffered bad back pain until I found a good chiropractor--a couple were no good at all, but the right one helped me a lot. I go every couple of weeks now. So keep looking until you find a good one. Were you in Boston, I'd recommend the woman who does so much for me.

  2. I will try Chiro again. I have a friend who had serious recurring back pain (which I always wondered about--i mean, is the chiropractic helping?) and I will ask him for his doctor. I was just so turned off by this one chiro I saw in Iowa City (after being told that my neck bones were all wacky by the woman who came to my office to give massages). She used this stupid clicky thing to prod bones. Really, it felt like nothing; it felt ridiculous. But I will try again! Thanks, Carter!

  3. I'd recommend you look for a physical therapist rather than a chiropractor. There are a small number of things a chiro can help with, but there's a lot of things that chiropractors do that aren't rooted in reality and can cause actual harm, such as neck manipulations which have been identified as the cause of strokes in some patients who received such adjustments.

    I always thought that if you had back pain, the chiro was the person you went and saw, but in recent years have become aware of what exactly chiropractic consists of and the theories behind their treatments and was horrified.

    Chiro is one of those fields where most people are of the impression that it's a perfectly legitimate medical option, completely unaware of the actual basis of chiropractic which can only be described as nonsense.

    If you're able to, I'd recommend reading something like this:

    There are "good" chiropractors out there, but you've got a good chance of finding yourself being treated by a kook, like the one you described in your comment above.

    Also, you're more likely to find a physical therapist who'll actively look to fix your problems, as opposed to see you as a source for repeat business with ongoing treatments, like Carter and your friend's chiropractors apparently do.

    I hope whatever course of action you take, you find some relief soon. Look forward to seeing more frequent posts from you.

  4. Well, thanks. Back was better this morning and hurst again due to 12 hours of sitting on bleachers this weekend. I actually think maybe it's my hip. Anyway, I don't have much faith in chiropractors; it's true. If I can find one people around me swear by, I will try once more, but that's about it. Once more.



  5. Finally caved and saw a chiro. Guess what? Now, I am almost all better.

    Learned that I need ICE (I sit against a 7 lb block of ice for a half an hour, a few times a day), not heat. The heat was apparently making it worse.

    I took a lot of ibuprofen to help with pinched nerve swelling, too.

    It's all about the inflammation...and now I can finally exercise again (although Burpees hurt my back...oh what a Burpees).

  6. Excellent website. Lots of helpful info here. I am sending it to several buddies ans also sharing in delicious. And of course, thank you for your sweat!
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  7. Hope you get better! I pinched my sciatic nerve once when I overstretched in yoga and that was no fun. I've never had a really painful back but my father has and I can tell it can be really, really painful. He hurt himself when he was lifting something a bit too heavy a bit too fast so I would suggest lifting light weights when you feel better. And I haven't tried chiro but I swear by a good massage therapist - helps a lot compensate for the hours I spend at the computer. Hopefully by now this is only a distant memory.

  8. I think that's what it was--pinched nerve. It was strange because not only could I not stretch forward or to one side, but even trying some yoga twists did not result in any adjustment to my spine. It must have been very swollen. The chiropractor basically lied on top of me and squeezed me. It was an alarming feeling. A few of these visits (and that weird electrical stimulation thing) and the ice did the trick.