Chiropractic As A Tool To Decrease Dangerous Pain Medication
Chiropractor in Amarillo discusses how chiropractors in Amarillo are helping patients reduce or eliminate pain medication
We have lived for decades with the desire to be able to take a pill and get out of pain. That is so understandable. We are busy people and nobody has the time to be in pain and hurting. Of course it would be nice to simply take a round of pills and be able to get out of pain while still being productive. Providing for our families is our number one job, after all.
Unfortunately, pain has proven to be a worthy adversary and modern medicine has done little in being able to innovate, adapt, and overcome. In fact, it is quite the opposite. In fact, opioid and drug deaths have been on the rise for a decade with over 72,000 drug-related deaths just last year. Many opioid addictions originally began with a prescription for back pain. Keep in mind that a little over 58,000 deaths are directly due to the war in Vietnam and that was spread out over a decade. Yet, we have 72,000 deaths in one year on our hands but it essectially flies under the radar.
Biomechanically and with regards to the musculoskeletal system, pain continues to be the largest problem we face. Low back pain increased in prevalence 54% since 1990. Corticosteroid and epidural steroid injections have gone up considerably but have shown no better outcomes in those that have undergone the procedures. The same goes for some of the spinal surgeries such as the fusion procedures. All of the traditional treatments have been tried and been found in the research literature to be mostly ineffective.
What are the answers then? Fortunately, the United States government and the medical field have been making a pivot in recent years. What I mean is that they have recognized the shortfalls of traditional medical thinking and are trying to turn the boat around. Unfortuntely, it seems at this point to be more than a boat. In fact, it is looking more and more like an aircraft carrier. The wheels turn slowly when trying to change the beliefs and habits of traditional medical thinking. Even when their biggest and most powerful organizations are the ones leading the charge.
For example, the American College of Physicians, one of the nation's largest organizations, updated their recommendations over the last few years to include the following treatments as FIRST-LINE therapies for acute AND chronic low back pain:
- Spinal Manipulative Therapy
- Low Level Laser
- Tai Chi
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
At Creek Stone, we offer the first 6 of these therapies (bolded) and have forged a network of referrals for the remaining services we do not currently offer. The main goal is to give our area’s physicians an evidence-based, patient-centered smart option for their back pain patients. An option that they can trust will take excellent care of their patients.
In addition to the American College of Physicians, the following groups and publications are now in agreement with these recomendations:
- The Joint Commission,
- The Lancet Series On Low Back Pain,
- The White House Report on Opioid Abuse, and
- 37 States Attorney Generals.
The overwhelming sentiment these days is to undergo nonpharmacologic (no pain meds), non-invasive (no surgery) therapies FIRST. Yet, too many in the medical field continue to bypass these recommendations. Either because they are yet to become aware of them or because they are willfully sidestepping them. Regardless of the reason, clinics that can help and fit firmly within these newer guidelines are still not yet inundated with referrals from medical professionals. Not yet anyway.
Some new information that just came out in February of 2021 is that 32% of low back pain sufferers have their pain progress from being short-lived to being long-term, hard to get rid of, chronic pain. Many of the patients that saw their pain progress to chronic, hard to get rid of pain were actually at low to medium risk of developing chronic pain. It seems that one of the biggest factors for the pain in these patients become chronic was that many of them went through the WRONG treatment FIRST. Things like pain meds, shots, and unnecessary x-rays and/or MRI/CT exams. Believe it or not, the treatment you receive FIRST goes a long way toward how well you recover or if you recover at all.
The Veterans Administration (VA) has made a huge step forward, however. The VA now commonly sends their vets to chiropractors, acupuncturists, and other conservative care practitioners as a way to offer their vets effective treatment and while making inroads toward getting them out of pain, getting them better sleep, and getting them more involved in their lives. It has been a lot of fun to see the vets we treat start making the turn after coming to treat with us here at Creek Stone Integrated Care.
Spinal manipulative therapy performed by an evidence-based, patient-centered chiropractor who knows how to identify and implement targeted exercise protocols, as well as low level laser, acpuncture, and massage techniques is your first choicel for treatment of back pain and it does not matter how long you have had the pain. Visits with this kind of chiropractor first is your best chance at avoiding pain medication, costly and risky steroid shots, prolonged pain, and eventual surgery.
Even if you are at low risk.
Listen to the largest, most influential medical associations and orgnanizations when they tell you that spinal manipulativet therapy, massage, exericse, acpuncture, heat, and low level laser should be tried first. They know what they are talking about and evidence-based, patient-centered chiropractors know how to do all of it.
Dr. Jeff Williams, DC, FIANM is a Fellowship-trained Neuromusculoskeletal specialist and chiropractor in Amarillo, TX. As an Amarillo chiropractor, Dr. Williams treats chronic pain, disc pain, low back pain, neck pain, whiplash injuries, and more. Dr. Williams is also the host of The Chiropractic Forward Podcast (https://www.chiropracticforward.com). Through the podcast, Dr. Williams teaches fellow chiropractors and advocates weekly for evidence-based, patient-centered practice through current and relevant research. If you have any questions for Dr. Williams, feel free to email at [email protected] Learn more about Dr. Williams and his practice at https://www.amarillochiropractor.com.
Dr. Williams was voted Best Chiropractor In Amarillo in the Best of Amarillo 2020. Dr. Williams's full-time Amarillo chiropractic practice is Creek Stone Integrated Care at 3501 SW 45th St., Ste. T, Amarillo, TX 79109. If you are searching for a chiropractor near me, Dr. Williams is your Amarillo Chiropractor.