I have written in the past about suffering from colds. Illnesses and aches and pains are part of growing old. The body stops being young and resilient, injuries – even little things like paper cuts – take longer to heal, they even happen more often.
One of the things that I find myself dealing with at the moment is lower back pain.
It’s one of those things that can have many different causes. Injury, stress, even constipation can play a part. And it seems there are more treatments as there are causes.
Yes, I did see my “primary care physician”, and got a referral to a physical therapist.
Two sessions with him, and I’ve got a set of exercises to do. I’ve been doing them most days of the week, spending about half an hour every evening laying on the floor using an old belt to pull my feet into the air. How these leg stretches are supposed to help my back is a mystery, but I’m not the expert.
I’ll occasionally mix things up with some “yoga-like” stretches that The Internet says are helpful. I’ve also got five different “lumbar support pillows”, none of which really fit with my desk chair (where I do most of my sitting). I have two heating pads. The gel pad is so large that it doesn’t like to stay in position. And being an old gel thing that may already have a tiny leak, I’m hesitant to keep it in place by leaning back against it. The smaller “clay pellet” pad stays in place without any problems, but it doesn’t heat up easily or hold heat well.
There are also over-the-counter pain killers, both for external and internal use. The external ointments are all smelly and messy. Anything taken internally – be it ibuprofen, acetominophen, alcohol, or cannabinoids – all have their side effects from potential overuse. And I don’t want to become dependent on chemicals anyway.
Occasionally, I consider maybe looking for other treatments like massage therapy or yoga. But it probably won’t be easy finding regular sessions or classes that will fit into my work schedule. Acupuncture is something I don’t want to consider just yet.
The lesson here?
Kids, when your parents tell you to “Sit up straight and don’t slouch”, they aren’t kidding around.