Studies show “Alternatives” may truly be the intelligent 1st choice for back pain, arthritis and other chronic pain
Bad news for drug merchants covering up back pain; really good news for those connecting body with mind, and mind with body (and the people needing their help).
From NIH to NPR to NBC, on top of the recent slams against opioid drugs for chronic pain from the Department of Health and Human Services1 the media is reporting on new studies showing:
- Tylenol works no better than a placebo for arthritis2 and offers virtually no benefit, according to a large study that follows on the heels of last year’s study blasting the drug acetaminophen (paracetamol) as ineffective for low back pain as well3
On the other hand…
- Mindful meditation and yoga (aka MBSR, or Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) improves function and reduces pain better than usual medical care. Improvements held 6 and 12 months after the start of an 8 week program4
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (aka CBT) also improved function and reduced pain better than usual medical care. And here as well, after an 8-week program participants were better 6 and 12 months later5
So I am pleased to see an NIH director say in this March 22 Press Release:
“The results from this research affirm that non-drug/non-opioid therapies, such as meditation, can help manage chronic low-back pain.” – Josephine Briggs, M.D., director of National Institute of Health(NIH)/ National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Briggs also says, “It is vital that we identify effective nonpharmacologic treatment options for 25 million people who suffer from daily pain, in the United States.”
Why I’m Excited: The StrongPosture® protocols combined with passive therapies such as chiropractic for joints and massage for muscles are a “Cognitive Body Therapy,” combining the benefits of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) with the demonstrated bio-mechanical benefits of what was previously called “alternative therapy.”
Coincidentally, my most recent blog post was Connecting Biofeedback, Cognitive Behavior Therapy and StrongPosture® (this was before the CBT and MBSR studies published)
Our goal is to retrain Body AND Mind to subjective and objective accuracy. Daily StrongPosture® exercises synergize with chiropractic manipulation of the spine and extremities as well as muscle therapy with posture exercise tracks for Balance, Alignment and Motion. Combining attentional focus with motor control training helps provide people ongoing skills to help them manage their pain, and along with manipulation to restore joint motion and massage to release soft tissue restrictions helps progressively increase muscle and joint function.