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  • Writer's pictureChang Min Lee

10 Common Myths About Low Back Pain

Did you know that low back pain is the leading cause of disability worldwide? In fact, it’s estimated that low back pain affects more than 80% of the population at some point in their lives. While there are many different causes of low back pain, it can be treated with a variety of methods, including physical therapy, dry needling, and corrective exercises.

Despite its prevalence, there are still a lot of myths surrounding low back pain. Here are 10 common myths about low back pain:

Myth 1: Low back pain is just a part of getting older

Just because low back pain is common doesn’t mean it’s normal. While age can be a factor in developing low back pain, it’s not necessarily a part of the aging process. There are many things you can do to prevent or treat low back pain, regardless of your age.

Myth 2: You should just tough it out

If you have low back pain, chances are it’s going to interfere with your daily life. That’s why it’s important to seek treatment, rather than just trying to “tough it out.” There are many effective treatments available for low back pain, so you don’t have to suffer needlessly.

Myth 3: Bed rest is the best way to treat low back pain

While it may be tempting to just stay in bed when you have low back pain, this is actually one of the worst things you can do. Bed rest can actually make low back pain worse, and can lead to muscle atrophy and deconditioning. Instead, try to stay active and limit your time spent in bed to no more than a few hours at a time.

Myth 4: You need an X-ray to diagnose low back pain

In most cases, low back pain can be diagnosed without the need for an X-ray or other imaging tests. Your physical therapist will likely ask you about your symptoms and medical history, and may perform a physical exam. In some cases, additional tests may be necessary to rule out other conditions, but X-rays are generally not needed.

Myth 5: You should only see a doctor if your low back pain is severe

Whether your low back pain is mild or severe, it’s important to see a physical therapist if you’re experiencing any symptoms. Early diagnosis and treatment can help improve your chances of a successful outcome.

Myth 6: Surgery is the only way to treat chronic low back pain

Surgery is only necessary in a small minority of cases of chronic low back pain. In most cases, chronic low back pain can be treated with nonsurgical methods, such as medication, physical therapy, and exercise.

Myth 7: Cracking your back will help relieve low back pain

Do you love the satisfying sound of a good crack? If you do, you might think that cracking your back will help relieve low back pain. Unfortunately, this is just a myth. Cracking your back may provide temporary relief, but it won’t actually fix the underlying problem. In fact, it could even make low back pain worse.

If you’re experiencing low back pain, avoid cracking your back and see a physical therapist for treatment instead. Physical therapy can help identify the root cause of your low back pain and provide relief.

Myth 8: You should always see a physician first for low back pain