Medical Advice

Alternative Therapies for Back Pain

Back pain is the leading cause which limits the freedom of movement of persons younger than 45 years. According to statistics, 3 out of 4 people manifest back pain at some point during their lives. Among some treatment methods there are: medication, self-care, as well as surgery. In treating back pain alternative therapies bring their contribution as well. Although they are not a cure, alternative therapies are useful for controlling and relieving pain. Medical institutions approve the use of alternative therapies in patients whose health condition does not improve with self-care or mild pain medication. Do you suffer from chronic low back pain? Below, you will learn about alternative therapies that can help relieve pain.


Spinal Manipulation

The spinal manipulation technique (the vertebrae) involves applying a controlled force to joints of the spine, in order to reposition the vertebrae. Pressure is exerted on the spine by the hands of an expert or special devices. The maneuvers are performed by chiropractors, specialists in physiotherapy, osteopaths and conventional medicine specialists. Practice has shown that spinal manipulation may lead to an improvement in mild to moderate back pain. This improvement can last from three months to a year.


This is a traditional Chinese method based on the theory that a vital force called Qi, crosses the body through certain channels (meridians). Blocking these causes diseases and thus the manifestation of their symptoms. Specialists in acupuncture believe that the introduction of precise thin needles along these meridians can unblock the flow of the Qi energy. Through this process the pain will be relieved and the health restored. Clinical studies have shown that, at present, real and sham acupuncture had equally good results (and together were more effective) as conventional treatments to relieve chronic pain of back. Further research is currently carried out to discover why real acupuncture and placebo acupuncture had a similar effect in relieving back pain.


Yoga is an Indian practice characterized by combining physical exercise such as stretching, flexibility, muscle strength with meditation. These movements can help relieve muscle tension and reduce back pain. Research has confirmed that yoga reduces pain, improves overall health and promotes quitting medication for back pain. For this type of pain special types of yoga are recommended, e.g. gentle styles, such as hatha yoga. Energetic types of yoga can worsen the symptoms.


Osteopathy is a type of treatment in which the manually practitioner works the muscles and joints to cure dysfunction and restore their mobility and functionality. Techniques may include spinal manipulation, stretching, gentle pressure and resistance. According to studies this therapy significantly reduces back pain. The positive effects can last for at least three months. To determine which functional module of the treatment and whether the effects can be felt long term additional studies are needed.

Cognitive behavioral therapy

This type of therapy instructs the patient on how to think and act in response to pain. The goal is to learn to better cope with pain, to think positive, but also to detect and remove negative feelings and behaviors that may block recovery. Methods of adaptation to pain, such as techniques for relaxation can improve muscle tone and can distract attention from pain. Research on small groups of volunteers shows that cognitive behavioral therapy can be effective in relieving chronic low back pain. The effects increase when associated with other types of therapies that address the physical aspects of pain.


Making exercise for therapeutic purposes is helpful if chronic back pain, reducing pain and restoring risk. Your doctor can advise on specific exercises, aimed at strengthening certain muscles that support the spine . Also, exercise ofaerobics , stretching can reduce stiffness in order to improve capacity and reduce low back pain exercise.

Therapeutic massage

The goal of massage therapy is effective in reducing inflammation, relaxing muscles and improving local circulation. Research has shown that massage can relieve pain, depression, anxiety, and can improve the quality of sleep. Swedish massage techniques, based on a deep massage on target points were most successful in reducing low back pain.

Interdisciplinary Management

Interdisciplinary chronic pain management combines all these methods. It is designed to control and manage resistance to pain through a combination of:
– exercise,
– education on the risks, and alternatives;
– psychotherapy , including some types of learning relaxation
– professional counseling in order to resume their professional lives.

According to recent studies, interdisciplinary management of chronic pain can be as effective as a surgical procedure on the spine in treating many types of pain. Discuss with your doctor when you want to tap into alternative treatments for back pain. Also advisable would be to seek professional help with practical experience so that favorable results in relieving back pain will appear faster.

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