Stress can cause back pain. While the link between stress and back pain isn’t fully understood, many medical experts believe that emotional and psychological factors tend to trigger physical changes which lead to back pain.
When back pain is stress-related, there will be a pain cycle.
Discover the Back Pain Cycle
The stress-related back pain cycle begins with the patient becoming more limited in terms of what he or she can do, based on the severity of back discomfort. Activities may decrease because the patient is afraid of getting injured or exacerbating back pain. The desire to limit activities may also be triggered by warnings from physicians and others. These warnings may encourage the patient to rest, rather than doing things.
As activities are limited, the pain cycle evolves. Decreased activity leads to the poor physical condition. Lack of activity weakens the muscles. This sets the stage for more back discomfort in the future! The cycle tends to repeat endlessly in chronic back pain sufferers until they find the right self-care techniques and medical treatments.
Some back pain sufferers end up feeling very isolated. They may have a lot of fears about their health and the limitations that back pain imposes on their lives. Some may become depressed.
Is back pain a sign of stress?
Back pain is often a sign of stress. For this reason, people who are prone to back pain will benefit from using stress management techniques regularly. Examples of effective stress management techniques include Yoga, meditation, and massage (self-massage or massage administered by a qualified massage therapist). Also, back pain sufferers should make a point of trying the most trusted stress-related back pain treatments.
Stress Related Back Pain Treatments
Stress-related back pain may also be known as TMS (Tension Myoneural Syndrome). It’s pain with no clear cause, beyond stress itself. There is a stress-related pain expert, Dr. Sarno, and he believes that patients with TMS should address the emotional and psychological variables which may be triggering their pain, with a mind to breaking the pain cycle. The doctor advises stress-related back pain sufferers to focus on the feelings that they may be repressing. Examples include rage and sadness.
Patients are encouraged to think about psychological factors, rather than physical ones. So, psychotherapy may be a good treatment approach if you experience this type of back pain. When unconscious issues are addressed, it may be possible to become healthier psychologically…and live a life which where back pain isn’t a constant hindrance.
Positive Lifestyle Changes are Recommended
Doctors who treat this type of back pain believe that certain positive lifestyle changes bring big pain relief benefits. For example, getting enough sleep is essential. Your body heals itself while you doze. If you’re not sleeping enough, you’re not allowing your body to recover as it should. Focus on getting eight hours of sleep per night.
As well, adopt a healthy diet. The best foods are unprocessed and natural. Lean proteins, whole grains, low-fat dairy, fruits, and veggies should be what you eat the most, in recommended quantities. Also, you need eight ounces of pure water or another fluid daily.
It’s also smart to ensure that you get moderate physical activity regularly. If you’re worried about straining your back during exercise, consider swimming. The water will help to protect you from injuries that might worsen back discomfort. Walking is also a great form of exercise for back pain sufferers.
Avoid bad habits, such as smoking and drinking. They are going to introduce toxins into your body which may create stress and trigger discomfort.
Talk to a Doctor Today
If you believe that your back pain may have an emotional and psychological component, or already know that it does, you’ll benefit from talking to your doctor. He or she may be able to recommend a good therapist who is able to help you work through your emotional and psychological issues.
When you approach the issue of your back pain in a new way, via psychotherapy, you may be able to let out repressed emotions. Once you do let these feelings out, you may feel de-stressed.
Talking to a mental health professional about what you’re going through in your life, or experiences from your past which have scarred you may be the key to unlocking a pain-free future.