Back pain is one of the most common problems patients come into clinic for treatment of Acupuncture. Pain is debilitating and draws on our bio-energy reserves often enabling us to feel vulnerable, weak and unable to focus on our day to day activities. Most people attend my clinic when the back pain is chronic. Chronic indicating that the pain is longer than three months.
It is important for patients to understand it is difficult to give an accurate time frame of the treatment outcome. Patients often ask how long will treatment take for pain to heal. This is a difficult question to answer as everybody is different. In my experience acute back pain from a recent injury will take four treatments over a span of two weeks. Chronic patients usually require two to three treatments a week for a month to six weeks to see full results. However there should be subtle shifts in the nature of the pain for the patient to be aware of during treatments. Subtle signs that show the road to recovery can be as follows; no longer in pain while sleeping, easier to get out of bed in the morning, more flexibility in back generally, able to stand longer during a days work, increased energy levels in general and feeling better within oneself.
When pain shifts location during the course of treatment it is a good sign the pain is on the way out. Bulging disks and disk herniation are usually the most challenging cases to treat. Back pain can be fickle and further constitution types can make it difficult especially if one is carrying excess weight.
Managing pain there is always light at the end of the tunnel. Most of the time during treatments it is important to be patient with yourself. Times of difficulty and especially with pain it is a good time to reflect on ourselves. We all fall into ruts at times and it is always times like these to honour and respect our bodies and give our bodies the tune up it needs.