pain cells, pain cream, cbd oil

Skin Creams Don't Fix Musculoskeletal Problems

Don't be sold on the wrong treatment

Over recent years, I'm seeing more and more advertising around magical pain-relieving gels and creams. I've seen them with spokespersons like Shaquille O'Neal and various other celebrities. I've seen the amazing healing powers of CBD creams advertised as well. This is the newest bandwagon so it makes sense that we will see lots of it in the coming years. 

Before I get started, I want to be clear; all of these creams and gels are going to have some pros and cons. Some probably absolutely help with some temporary relief. Maybe they work like a TENS electrical unit and just draw your attention away from the source of the pain for a little while. Maybe they actually do penetrate deep and offer some sort of pain relief that way. I will never say that these do not provide some relief on some level. That would be an ignorant statement on my part. So I will not make that claim. But what I will say, is that creams and gels will not, by themselves, fix musculoskeletal issues. 

We have used products like Biofreeze for years in our clinic and patients love it! But no bottle of Biofreeze ever did what a chiropractic adjustment or a great targeted exercise can do for pain. Instead of spending money on tubes and tubes of gels and creams, taking a good brisk walk around the block once a day and visiting a manual therapy provider when needed can typically do the trick and be exactly what you needed. 

What makes a patient just want to buy creams and gels rather than get treatment for long-standing pain? Well, there are a few reasons that come to mind:

  1. Expense
  2. Fear of the unknown
  3. Lack of trust
  4. Previous bad experience
  5. Don't think feeling better is possible
  6. Don't want to be told to exercise
  7. Pain defines you

I'm sure there are more reasons but these are the ones that come to mind immediately. So let's discuss them each briefly. 


Expense - the cost of being treated

Here at Creek Stone Integrated Medical, yes, we have a chiropractor that's been voted Best Chiropractor in Amarillo several times, but we also have medical services, massage, exercise & strengthening, and we have acupuncture. So, the cost of treatment would depend on which service one chooses. Many patients require more than one service. According to the American College of Physicians, a broad management, several services combined, is what gets pain knocked out.  so some patients may opt to try to keep costs low by limiting treatment to chiropractic only or trigger point injections only. Or massage and acupuncture and doing their exercises at home instead of here at the clinic to save money. Whatever treatment looks like, we are sensitive to financial concerns and are happy to help you the best we can inside of what you allow. It's that simple. 


Fear Of The Unknown

The first thing to understand is that you can come to meet us and our providers and be given a tour of our clinic at no charge. You can have a free initial consultation with our providers just to meet them. Meeting a provider and touring the clinic can typically take some of the 'fear of the unknown' out of the conversation completely. 


Lack Of Trust

Sometimes you've been told bad things about specific providers or specific entire professions. This leads to a lack of trust. Let me assure you that our providers went through years and years of specialized study to be able to help you at a high level. Our Nurse Practitioner had to spend several years as an RN, BSN, and then finally, after years of study, they achieve their Nurse Practitioner certification and are able to treat patients on their own with medical director oversight. For the chiropractic part of Creek Stone, I am the only Fellowship-trained chiropractor in Texas west of the I-35 corridor. All of the way down to Mexico. In a profession where only 2% get Fellowship training, at this point, I now have two Fellowships; orthopedics and forensics meaning I am an expert witness for court cases. That should build some trust. I also host a weekly research-based podcast and have authored a book called The Remarkable Truth About Chiropractic: A Unique Journey Into The Research available on Amazon.

In addition, our acupuncturist went to school for approximately 6 years and our massage therapists are all licensed.


Previous Bad Experience

We cannot turn our patients into raving fans by taking advantage of them, scaring them into treatment, or giving them a bad experience. While we are in the healthcare business, we are also in the customer service business and we absolutely LOVE taking bad experiences from other providers and turning them into wonderful, healing experiences. In addition, just because physical therapy, medicine, or chiropractic didn't help you in the past does not mean they can't help you currently. Sometimes you just need a different provider whose skills match your issue better. That's it. Just a change of scenery can make the difference. 


Don't Think Feeling Better Is Possible

This is the key to chronic pain staying place. However, understanding it will be a journey but that you can move and function and climb out of the chronic pain pit is the first step to actually, and finally, feeling better. Feeling less pain is absolutely possible. No matter how long you have been hurting. You just need a place like Creek Stone that specializes in chronic pain. In fact, Dr. Williams teaches courses to his fellow chiropractors on chronic pain treatment. Feeling better and playing a bigger role in your life is absolutely within reach. Get rid of that thought immediately. 


Don't Want To Have To Exercise

A sedentary lifestyle leads to increased anxiety, depression, and less sleep. Not to mention all of the other problems associated with no activity. All of it goes to deepen chronic pain. However, on the other hand, just taking a simple daily walk can reverse everything. Profoundly even. Movement is healing. Motion is the lotion for our joints. Patients that have just undergone serious surgery are still up and walking the hospital halls almost immediately. Because motion and activity helps you heal faster and more thoroughly. Don't be afraid of movement. Hurt does not mean harm so embrace it. There are no hacks or shortcuts here. Just embrace it. 


Pain Defines You

This one can be a bit touchy to talk about but let's be honest, we all know someone (maybe you) whose pain has come to define them. They talk about their pain to anyone who will listen. They think about their pain all of the time. They plan their day around their pain. They embrace their pain like a warm blanket. They want everyone to know how they suffer and sympathy for their pain doesn't really hurt their feelings at all. They welcome the sympathy. These patients are in no hurry to do exercises. They're in no hurry to go for a walk or even seek treatment in the first place. If they don't have their pain to cling to, what will they do? This is a behavioral issue, of course, but this type of 'stinkin' thinkin' can seriously limit a patient's life and enjoyment of that life. We've only got one life so isn't it better to hurt but get to work on resolving it to the best of your ability? A sedentary lifestyle is not an option and, while moving may hurt, if those in chronic pain wait to quit hurting before they start moving, they're in a lot of trouble in the long term.


Now that I've covered the reasons patients buy skin creams for deeper musculoskeletal conditions, let's say this; the creams and gels can reasonably be used as an ancillary treatment choice for muscle pains. They may be effective and at the end of the day if it makes you feel better, who cares how it works? Even if it's a placebo effect, it doesn't matter. The result is that you feel better. But, using creams is like taking the battery out of the smoke alarm because you don't like the racket. The fire is still going. The relief is typically short-lived because creams and gels will never solve the source of the issue; the deeper problem that is causing the alarm bells. The American College of Physicians does not recommend oils, creams, and gels as first-line therapies for back pain. Instead, they recommend spinal manipulative therapy, exercise, massage, acupuncture, low-level laser, and low-grade meds; all of which we have here at Creek Stone. 

Stop putting up with pain. It's no longer welcome in your house. Take all of that money you would spend on creams and gels and kick it to the curb. Let us help you. Cal Creek Stone Integrated Medical at 355-3000 and let us get you on the road to getting active, living a better quality of life, and enjoying your time with family and friends. That's huge for so many in our community that have been dealing with severe pain for years. We can do something to help. 



Dr. Jeff Williams, DC, FIANM, DABFP is double Board Certified as a Fellow in Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine and Orthopedics as well as a Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Professionals, 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 ( 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

Dr. Williams was voted Best Chiropractor In Amarillo in the Best of Amarillo 2020 & 2021. Dr. Williams's full-time Amarillo chiropractic practice is Creek Stone Integrated Medical 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.  


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Jeff S Williams, DC, FIANM, DABFP

Jeff S Williams, DC, FIANM, DABFP


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