When is a pain not a pain?

Posted by & filed under Health and Fitness.

When we feel a pain, for example back ache, there can be an assumption that something needs fixing to reduce the pain.  Or we just reach for the pain killers and carry on.  Sometimes, though, pain isn’t really a pain that is a cause for alarm.  It just means we have not moved anything other than our fingers for some hours; such as me now, having battered out a few blogs.  The human body is meant to move, meaning that muscles contract and relax, pumping the blood through them.  When we are still for a while, all this stops and blood slightly drains from the muscle, raising the acidity level in the tissues which results in pain and a strong cue to move. So sometimes backache or neck ache is simply the body telling us that it needs some movement to get our blood pumping.

If this advice is followed, and we find ourselves having to get up and take a meaningful walk to the biscuit barrel every ten minutes, then it is worth considering our working position.  A major cause of everyday pain what position we put our body in for many hours.  How we sit at the desk, our driving position, even the position we sleep in at night.  Sitting slumped at the desk, with head poked forwards and shoulders hunched for hours on end can only end in pain and trips to the pain menders: chiropractors, osteopaths, physiotherapists, remedial masseuses and so on.  Ignoring our working posture stretches some muscles and shortens others, so rapidly increasing the amount of acid build up in the tissues plus leading to long term postural changes.  The body always adapts to what it experiences and ultimately the shape of our bones gets changed.  Not so good.

Pain is actually very complicated, what has one person in agony is scarcely noticed by another; when we are very stressed, pain is definitely worse; if the pain has negative implications, then it will be more intense and so on.

The bottom line is that the worst thing to do with a pain is take a pain killer and then ignore it.  The pain is there for a very good reason: move your arse and/or improve body position.  And if that doesn’t improve things, then more drastic action is necessary. The body needs remedial help.  Z health helps.

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