I'm Dr. Molly with Your Goals Physical Therapy. Let's talk about back pain. Are you suffering from low back pain when you go from sitting to standing? Are you having to press your hands on your knees when you want to stand up by slowly walking your hands up your thigh. You're not alone. There are many people who suffer from this. Of course this comes with anxiety when this starts. You know that there's something wrong with your back. It hurts to stand up but you've found a way to get around the pain. But the real question is, is this something that you're going to have to do forever? Does it mean if I go to the doctor, they're going to send me to get cortisone shots and MRIs and surgeries? How many days off from work? I mean it just causes a cascade of other problems that you're just not really willing to deal with. And so right now you're at home just suffering because you can't sit for too long. And then when you go to stand up, it really requires a whole lot of effort from your arms to get you to standing.
Well, there's some good and bad news. I'm going to give you the bad news first because I'm not gonna dwell on it. So the bad news is that is typically a sign that you have a disc bulge or herniation in your spine. So some level of your spine is not very stable right now. The good news is first that you're acknowledging that this is a problem. You're not just stuck in the, I'm going to ignore a category anymore. You're officially looking at videos, trying to figure out what the answer is. So it's already a good sign. And just by being able to tell somebody that moving that way helps you feel better; That gives me a professional in back pain, a whole lot of information. This first piece of information, telling me this way of moving helps your lower back pain, tells me that your lower back muscles do not feel strong enough to hold your whole body up.
When I go from sitting to standing normally, without having to press my hands into my knees, something is holding my whole body and helping it extend up. Well, if you're having to use your hands, your body's telling you that you don't feel strong enough to do that. The other thing it’s telling you, because when you press down on your knees, it actually opens up a little bit of space between the bones in your lower back tells me that your body doesn't feel like it's in the best alignment.
Those are two huge pieces of information that help me dictate and give you specialized exercises and activities to help you reduce that pain. Just instantaneously, just that little piece of information. What does that mean going forward?
What should you be doing right now? First you need to find somebody who is a movement expert, somebody who deals with back pain all the time.
Just because you have a herniated disc doesn't mean that you have to have surgery.
It doesn't mean that you have to have injections.
And it definitely does not mean that you're going to have pain for the rest of your life.
This could be one hiccup. Depending on how long you've been dealing with this pain, most people have been ignoring and putting up with back pain for a long time, it can feel like there is absolutely no hope. It has only gotten worse. Why would you assume it's going to get better? I totally appreciate that because it wouldn’t be very hard to think that way.
BUT that doesn't have to be YOUR future.
I'm here to tell you that I help people all the time, every day, that start off with back pain that is as severe as that and worse, get back to running and get back to lifting weights and get back to just general housework without any pain at all.
The way we do that is by looking at how you're moving and finding out where that weakness is and how to give your body that better alignment that it’s so craving that it is forcing you to do weird things. It is very hard to do that on your own. If you just went and did a general strengthening program. For instance you Google, “what do I do for back pain?” You're going to get some very general back exercises and some very general back stretches. Which is great if you have a generalized problem, but if you're still digging around and looking for something as specific as why do I need to press my hands on my knees to stand up? You need something that's a little bit more specialized. You need something that's going to help retrain your body on how to move properly and how to re-engage certain muscles that aren't engaging right now. Trying to do that on your own is very difficult. Why would your body make any changes if you don't have somebody over there saying, “That looks really good, but you're not actually using the muscles you think you are.” and then having that person help you correct the movement. Without that immediate feedback why would your body make any adjustments?
I know that if I'm working on something and I'm trying to learn a new skill, I have a coach. I need somebody who's going to help me learn that new skill. Let's take playing the piano. It is a very awkward thing. I'm trying to learn how to play the piano and read sheet music, and I don't have an ear for music. I need somebody to tell me how to play so that what I'm playing actually sounds like “Baby Shark”, because what I was playing did not sound like “Baby shark”. I need somebody to give me feedback that I am not keeping the beat. I am not pressing the right key. I'm in the wrong octave. I need somebody to help me out.
And that is what I do for other people. I help people with back pain, figure out how to move again, figure out how to reactivate these muscles and get them back to all the things that they never thought that they'd be able to do again. So if you are looking for that type of care, please reach out to me. My contact information is below this video. If this is information that you think somebody else would benefit from, please share the video. “Like” this video if the information is helpful so that it reaches more people.
Have a great day!
WE HELP ACTIVE ADULTS OVERCOME THEIR ACHES AND PAINS TO GET THEM BACK TO THEIR FAVORITE ACTIVITIES WITHOUT MEDICATION, INJECTIONS OR SURGERIES.
Dr. Molly McDonald