Are there alternative treatments for back pain?

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Brian Yee PT, MPhty, OCS, FAAOMPT

Even though Physical Therapy is not considered as an ‘alternative treatment’, what a specific Physical Therapist provides may be alternative to the ‘stereotypical’ regimen of hot/cold packs, electrical stimulation, traction, and basic exercises to improve core stability.

At our facility, we determine the type or category of pain the patient is experiencing as well what factors are contributing to the pain. This can include joint, nerves, or soft-tissue tissue pathologies. We also assess muscle and movement control patterns that can cause undue stress on the back. We then investigate if there are other factors such as vitamin / hormonal deficiencies, food allergies, or other systemic issues that could potentially be a source of back pain.

Once this is determined a treatment plan is implemented that encompasses the best evidence-based research to correct the contributing factors. This can include ‘alternative’ techniques such as trigger point dry needling, nerve mobilization techniques called neurodynamics, and utilizing real-time ultrasound imaging to visualize proper muscle control around the spine.

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