The reality is that few people would say that pain is a good thing. No one wants to be in pain and the second we have pain we quickly look for ways to relieve it. And why wouldn’t we? Pain sucks. I’m, nor any other chiropractor would suggest that you should want to feel pain but I’d like to challenge the notion that back pain is an entirely negative experience.
Our body has some standard norms that must be maintained to be healthy. A few well-known examples of this include your pulse, blood pressure, and body temperature. Most of us are familiar with these. For example, you know that if your resting heart rate was 190 right now you’d be right to assume that something is wrong and you’d better figure out what. The problem with these norms is the reason for them becoming abnormal is often overlooked or ignored. We simply find a way to get rid of the secondary conditions (symptoms) that show up when something is wrong and then go on our merry way, willingly ignorant of the reason for the abnormal condition.
The fact of the matter is that in our culture we have been taught that no symptoms mean, no disease. No tumor = no cancer right? No symptom = no problem. Got it? Of course, you do because we all do it. But for some reason, we ignore this reality when it comes to our health and the presence of secondary conditions like back pain. As a chiropractor, I see this every day.
Don’t agree? Well, the next time the oil or check engine light comes on in your car what will you do? Most of us recognize these lights as an indication that we need to take the care in for an oil change or take it to a mechanic. Few people would unplug the light telling you that something is wrong. Doing so could be catastrophic.
But that is often exactly what we do with our health when warning lights like back pain show up. One, not the only cause of a secondary condition like back pain, is a shift from the normal spinal structure. Just like your pulse, your spine has a well-researched norm for its structure. That back pain could be the only thing telling you that you have a problem that could become disastrous if you just get rid of it without getting to a chiropractor to get your spine checked.