Pain & Injury: Part I

This following post is inspired by a great seminar that I took last year called Functional Range Conditioning (FRC) run by Dr. Andreo Spina. I not only learned some great new techniques but the course also gave me perspective on how the human body responds to injury and subsequent treatment (soft-tissue therapy, stretching, exercise) on a cellular level. Below I discuss aspects of the course in relation to my own experience in practice.

Something that I commonly hear from my patients at Mountain Health and Performance during the first couple visits is, “why did this injury occur” or “is it normal for me to have this pain”. Though it’s very common to have something like low back pain it is not necessarily normal either. If we look at humans from an evolutionary perspective it gives us a better understanding of how our bodies were meant to function. Our genome was likely selected during the late Paleolithic era during the time that humans existed as hunter-gatherers. Physical activity was a normal part of daily living as hunting and foraging for food was integral for survival. Flash forward to 2015 and a large proportion of the western world is sedentary and overeats. Even that hour of daily exercise isn’t enough to counteract all the negative effects of being sedentary for most of the day [haven’t you heard that sitting is the new smoking!!?].

So what can we do about it? The best medicine for musculoskeletal pain is movement. When you wake up in the morning make sure you move all your joints through their full ranges. If you sit all day at a desk make sure you have the appropriate posture/ergonomics and change your position at least every 20 minutes. Stand up, walk around and move your joints through their full range again. If you are in pain make sure to find a manual medical practitioner that can assess, diagnose and give you the appropriate treatment and exercise.

If you are seeing a manual therapist keep in mind that tissues need a certain amount of time and a number of treatment “inputs” to undergo long-term adaptation and change. That’s not to say that I expect all of my patients to come in for months on end but anticipating or expecting a quick fix is unrealistic for both the practitioner and patient. It’s also important that as a patient or client you put in the time and effort to enhance the changes initiated by manual therapy. At Mountain Health and Performance our chiropractors provide a diagnosis and realistic treatment plan that will include hands-on treatment, rehabilitation and a general time-frame for injury healing.

When you combine manual therapy, nutrition, and long-term commitment to movement & exercise on a daily basis you will improve the health of your tissues, decrease your chance of injury and decrease the frequency of present or future musculoskeletal pain syndromes.  Book your appointment at Mountain Health and Performance today!

Written by: Dr. Amy Wiggins