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If Dr. Seuss Could Explain Low Back Pain

“Doc, why does my low back hurt?”

“To quote one of the great doctors, Dr. Seuss, ‘I don’t know, Sam I am,’ but let’s see what we can do.”

Years of research and many smart people have been trying to figure out this mystery. We still don’t know much about the cause of low back pain, but a great clinician can tell you a lot by the patient’s history.

Some people can’t sit, and some people it hurts to stand. Some people’s symptoms can be pretty bland. Some have more pain at night and others have more pain in the morning. Sometimes low back pain can be the body giving us a warning. Some activities can help us feel better, and some can make us feel worse. Sometimes certain activities might even make us curse.

Some people are tall. Some people are small. Some days people may not even feel pain at all. Some people feel lots of pain. Some people feel a little bit of pain. And sometimes the pain can be confusing to explain. Some people have pain for several weeks, and some people have the low back pain for years. It can even bring some people to tears. Sometimes it can be on the left, and other times it can be on the right. Most of the time though, it shouldn’t be a cause for fright.

What helps with low back pain?

Some moving around is good, even if the low back is a little sore. Try different movements out. It’s good to explore! Some people can walk short distances which will help their low back, and others can walk long distances to go get a snack. Sitting still for a short time isn’t bad, but sitting still for a long time may not be good. It’s better to be more like water (always moving) and less like wood. Medications can help, and so can ice. But sometimes neither of those do if we’re being precise. Stretching helps some, and maybe surgery helps others. Treatment can be as different as non-identical twin brothers.

“So doc, what do I do? What do I do if my back hurts and my face is about to turn blue?”

“Why, Sam I am, there is so much you can do! Don’t freak out! Try one of these, or maybe two.”

Take several deep breaths and then go for a walk. This pain won’t last, so don’t get into negative self-talk.

Depending on what makes your body feel happy, try something cold or hot. Some is good, too much is not.

Do some light stretching when you feel stiff. You can even light a scented candle and give it a whiff.

And when all else fails, seek out a pro. Find someone that can help you move better to and fro!