The human race is unique for its bipedal lifestyle, and not even the other Great Apes are adapted for a lifetime of upright walking like humanity is. This is reflected in the human skeleton, such as its long legs, upright pelvic bone, and most of all, the uniquely S-shaped spine. This offered humanity many evolutionary advantages, though walking upright does have its costs. Even today, with modern medicine such as computerized range of motion testing equipment or chiropractic adjustment tools, chronic pain conditions such as lower back pain and spinal issues are quite common. Fortunately, rehab tools and systems such as the aforementioned computerized range of motion testing equipment can help, and many patients in developed parts of the world may get access to high-quality medical care for their spines and back muscles. A patient in a hospital, for example, may undergo physical therapy, or PT, which may involve the use of computerized range of motion testing equipment and stretch tests to measure their progress toward recovery. And what about chiropracty and yoga?
Americans and Back Pain
People around the world suffer from chronic pain and conditions such as back issues, and in the United States, many surveys and studies have shown how common back issues can be. Experts have said that as much as 80% of the American population may experience back pain at some point in their lives, and today, around 50% of all working Americans admit to having back pain. In fact, this means that at any given time, around 31 million Americans are suffering from back pain for one reason or another, and one in three women and one in four men suffer from it. Back pain may cause distress and limit mobility and the capacity to do paying work.
What is causing it? Simple old age is a common cause, as an elderly person has spent many decades fighting gravity. Thus, their spine is compressed and worn out, and this may cause stiffness and pinched nerves as well as strained muscles. Meanwhile, injuries such as sports mishaps often cause back pain, and some pregnant women may experience back pain as well due to the added mass and shift of gravity on their bodies late in a pregnancy. Another common cause of back pain is years of hard manual labor, and many surveyed Americans also blamed ongoing stress for their back issues. Overall, this means that back pain is the second most common reason Americans visit the doctor’s office, behind only upper respiratory issues. But for cases that don’t require surgery, non-invasive treatment methods may prove highly effective.
A patient who has suffered an accident or trauma may have trouble walking or using their limbs, or even have trouble bending or flexing their joints. This is why hospital patients will get access to physical therapy services, and the PT hospital staff will help that patient regain the use of their limbs. Most often, this involves using devices that test the patient’s full arcs of motion and the strength in their arms or legs, such as with computerized range of motion testing equipment. This involves strapping devices onto the patient and sensing their motion, and a 3D model of that person will be displayed on a computer. This provides a detailed, 3D recording of how the patient moved (or didn’t), and this is useful for diagnosing a patient’s problems and designing a recovery regimen. Patients may also stretch out large rubber cords to demonstrate their strength, allowing the therapist to gauge that patient’s progress and determine when they can be released.
A back pain sufferer who’s not in a hospital may turn to other medical experts. Such a person may visit their doctor about their back pain problem, then get referred to a local chiropractor or yoga expert. The former may use simple tools and even their bare hands to readjust the patient’s bones and muscles to relieve pressure or stiffness, and clear away pain. Yoga experts may, in private sessions, guide a patient through natural bends and flexes that relieve pain and pressure on their joints, from their back to the neck and shoulders or hips. This stretching may also relieve strained muscles and pinched nerves.