The Importance of Self Treatment

It is essential that we understand back and neck pian are a normal part of life and that they recur.

  • Being actively involved in the treatment and long term management of your problem means you gain control over it.
  • Understanding the unique characteristics of the problem and how to deal with it minimises recovery time.
  • Reduced recovery time maximises your ability to remain active in work and leisure or sporting activities.
  • The more independent you become in treating the problem means less need for lots of expensive treatment, and you don’t become reliant on those providing the treatment.
  • Having control over the problem reduces your fear of it, even if it should return.
  • Reducing fear of the problem and improved recovery time means we have gone a long way to minimising the effect it has on us and our lifestyle.
  • An ability to control and treat the problem independently means also gaining an understanding of how to minimise the risk of recurrence.

The principles of creating an appropriate personalised self treatment program that reflects each individual clients needs has been the primary focus for Spine Care since its foundation in 1991. This is Spine Care’s speciality.

What Is Involved In Self Treatment

How effective the individual becomes in managing their back or neck pain depends on the level of understanding of their problems unique characteristics. Each problem has an array of causative or contributing factors, everything from the physical demands of lifestyle and postural stresses, to sleep deprivation or the stresses life brings etc. These factors all impact on the symptoms that are experienced. Likewise factors that improve the problem can also be identified. It is necessary to look at the person as a whole to identify the all factors that are important to the management of each problem. This is achieved by gaining a detailed understanding of the pattern of symptoms in each instance.

It is usually relatively simple to gain control of the problem and doesn’t necessarily require elaborate time consuming or demanding exercise programs. Basic self treatment reflects which movements and positions are found to relieve and provoke symptoms, advocating the regular performance of reductive exercises and minimisation of provocative loads. Once the problem is controlled a graduated reintroduction of full function can be achieved.

Each individual has different goals they wish to achieve and perhaps limitations that need to be taken into consideration before an appropriate program is arrived at. Once again this should be driven by the person with the problem and not the expectations of a therapist. An overall program is then tailored to the individuals needs and can be as simple or complex as is required to meet the individual’s goals.

Finally appropriate long term self treatment strategies can be put in place to minimise the chance of recurrence and maximise your chance of remaining independent should symptoms return.

Reduce reliance on therapists and expensive treatments. There is no miraculous cure for back or neck pain as some may proclaim. Certainly the symptoms of a particular episode can sometimes be rapidly relieved by some passive form of treatment and this can be mistaken for being cured. However in reality the potential for a recurrence of symptoms or some degree of ongoing symptoms remains relatively high and with it the need to spend more money and time attending for more ‘treatment’.

Relying on others means we surrender control. This lack of control is in itself worrying for people, added to that being in pain and a loss of function (sometimes dramatic) and those worries increase. This reliance and increased concern about the problem actually has the potential to make the problem we experience far worse and far more debilitating.