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How to tell if back pain is serious

Many people experience chronic back pain – and relief is possible with the right treatment


By Kelci Fraser, PTA, B.S.Kin.
September 14, 2018

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From time to time, everyone deals with some type of pain. But back pain can be particularly straining because we use our back in every type of movement with our body. Know that you aren’t alone in the journey of managing chronic back pain on a day-to-day basis. Many people experience it. And the good news is – there are many ways to treat it and get relief.

Symptoms of chronic back pain

Knowing when pain has gone from a nuisance to something serious can be difficult to tell. But often times there are indicators that can help you out – even if you’re unsure of how your back pain started. These indicators can include:

  • Sharp pain that doesn’t go away with home remedies such as massage, icing and chiropractic care
  • Pain and discomfort that is present for more than a few weeks
  • Lower extremity weakness (weakness in the legs)
  • Loss of bladder function
  • High fever or severe stomach pain
  • Pain after a serious accident like a car accident or a fall

If you experience these symptoms it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor so you can determine next steps for managing pain.

Managing chronic back pain with Physicians Neck & Back Center

If you have pain that lasts longer than a few weeks, it’s probably time to get treatment. In the meantime, there are ways you can find relief. Some short-term pain management ideas include:

  • Icing and use of anti-inflammatory drugs (such as ibuprofen)
  • Massage therapy and manual therapy
  • Chiropractic care
  • Acupuncture

Long-term pain management involves help from a medical professional, but many people do not realize that it often does not need to include surgery. At PNBC, we work to help get you lasting relief with our individualized therapy programs and specialized equipment. The programs are designed with you in mind – meaning no two programs are alike. For some people, a PNBC program might only last a month. For others, it may be much longer. It all depends on your health needs, your level of strength and your goals.

How soon can I start a personalized PNBC program?

The sooner you start, the sooner you can achieve long-term back pain relief. And as we wind down the calendar year, it’s time to think about those Flexible Savings Account (FSA) dollars you’ve got sitting around. Most of the time, you need to use FSA dollars before the end of the year – or you lose them. Maybe you’ve already hit your deductible and you know you can get treatment without having to pay additional out-of-pocket costs. No matter what, it’s time to consider getting the relief you deserve.

Call to schedule an appointment at PNBC. Or, take a look at attending a free seminar on back pain.

About Kelci Fraser, PTA, B.S.Kin.

Kelci Fraser is a physical therapy assistant at Physicians Neck & Back Center, where she specializes in caring for patients with chronic to acute neck and back pain. Kelci has her Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology from the University of Minnesota and studied Physical Therapy at St. Catherine’s University. She enjoys staying active by playing volleyball a few nights a week and doing MRT workouts at the gym.

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