If you suffer from back pain, you’ve probably tried one or two ways to ease it. The range of options — from doing nothing at all to having surgery — is quite large. But the abundance of choices also presents a challenge. How do you know which therapy is right for you?
Before you decide on a course of treatment, keep these four things in mind.
- Identifying the type of back disorder you suffer from is the first — and most important — step in finding how best to treat it. Although options abound, not all are appropriate for your specific back problem.
- Whether you’re experiencing back pain for the first time or you’ve suffered a relapse, seek the advice of an experienced, certified, and well-recommended health specialist. That might be an internist, family practitioner, orthopedist, rheumatologist, neurologist, neurosurgeon, or physiatrist.
- Be an active participant in your care. Learn as much as you can about the risks and benefits of the treatments you are considering. Be clear on your treatment goals. Perhaps you don’t intend to hike up a mountain, but you do want to go on that long-awaited trip and enjoy the view of the Eiffel Tower.
- Don’t be afraid to question advice. If a health professional recommends an invasive, experimental, or expensive treatment, consider seeking a second opinion from a physician who frequently deals with your specific condition.
How you decide to manage your back pain will ultimately depend on many things. Taking all these factors into account will help you and your physician determine which of the available options are right for you.
For more on healing your aching back, buy Back Pain, a Special Health Report from Harvard Medical School.
Bible verses for today’s meditation and inspiration: Matthew E. McLaren
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 1 Corinthians 13:4-5 NIV
Do everything in love. 1 Corinthians 16:14
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life. Psalm 143:8 NIV
Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. Proverbs 3:3-4 NIV
And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:14 NIV
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 1 John 4:16 NIV
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Ephesians 4:2 NIV
We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19 NIV
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 1 Peter 4:8 NIV
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love. Ephesians 3:16-17 NIV
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Corinthians 13:13 NIV
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