One of the most common conditions I see in clinic is lower back pain and as a fellow sufferer myself I feel your pain – literally! With the majority of low back pain deemed “non specific” – as in, there is no obvious cause or damage, what therefore is going on?
Pain means different things to different people, in different contexts, and based on different experiences.
Acute, short-lived pain following a traumatic injury, in many cases heals. Chronic pain is the pain that has persisted long after the expected healing time and particularly when the source often can’t be diagnosed.
Living with chronic pain is almost a disease in itself
However, the biopsychosocial model of pain explains that pain is due to many factors:
Biological – the physical side of pain e.g. issues with the tissues, wear and tear of the joints, disease etc.
Psychological -further broken down into:
Emotions – anxiety, depression, stress
Pain related beliefs – e.g. based on past experiences
Catastrophising – unhelpful thoughts
Social – research has shown that there is a connection between lower socio-economic status and issues of chronic pain
As you can tell working with pain is not a straightforward issue and pain is as individual as the person experiencing it. In addition, there is no correlation between pain and tissue damage. There can be pain and no tissue damage and vice versa.
The physical pain can stop you from doing things you love, like taking walks, playing sports and socialising, which also has an impact on your mental health
If there is no tissue damage though, where is the pain coming from? This discrepancy is down to central sensitisation described in The Lancet, “as an amplification of neural signalling within the Central Nervous System that elicits pain hypersensitivity”. Basically meaning that the pain signals are ramped up without there being any known cause. There is good news though that it is possible to change this sensitivity.
So although it’s important that you are in control and are the driver of your pain management it helps to have the support of friends and family, work colleges and therapists.
As a skilled clinical massage therapist I am a specialist in handling pain and treating your body holistically. The Jing Method™ is a partnership between patient and practitioner where a six session treatment plan is designed to increase your mobility, agility, and joint range of motion (ROM), whilst focussing on decreasing your daily pain.
The Jing Method™ blends the best of advanced bodywork techniques from both East and West including trigger point, fascial work, acupressure and stretching with a truly holistic approach based on the biopsychosocial model of pain and modern neuroscience.
If you’re living with pain on a regular basis, there are many ways we can help so if you need advice, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
The information and resources given are for information and advice and are not a substitute for medical advice.