Neck/Back Pain

What is Neck/Back Pain?

Neck and back pain are caused by strained muscles, with back pain originating from the muscles, nerves, bones, joints, or other structures of the spine. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, stress from everyday life coupled with physical and mental tension can lead to neck and back pain. Overstrain, physical trauma, weakness, surgery, and lifestyle can manifest in neck and back pain.

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine can be successful for back and neck pain relief, they also repair damage caused by either attack of toxic fire, emotional disturbance, constitutional weakness, physical injury or trauma in their course of treatment.

Treatment

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine effectively treats back and neck pain gently and naturally. By addressing root causes of inflammation, damage caused by trauma, emotional disturbance, weakness, or injury can be successfully relieved. According to Chinese medicine acupuncture relieves pain by moving blockages of energy and blood causing a disharmony, which is perceived as pain. In contrast, conventional medicines reasoning for acupuncture’s success in pain relief is due to stimulation of nerves, muscles, and connective tissue by the insertion of the needles into specific points on the body. Research has shown that stimulating these points results in the increase of the body’s own pain killing chemicals such as endorphins, enkephalin, and endomorphin. The practitioners at Whole Family Health want to help you become pain free so that you can enjoy doing all the things you used to do. Acupuncture treatments vary from person to person and we will tailor them to fit your specific needs and goals. Therefore, your practitioner may use a combination of acupuncture and additional techniques to aid in your recovery. In conjunction with acupuncture or as treatment on its own, Chinese herbal remedies are useful in treating chronic headaches and migraines gently and naturally. Chinese herbal formulas are specially tailored for each individual case to create customized treatments for individuals. Between 5 and 20 herbs are chosen for their unique properties and combined to produce a treatment designed for your specific needs. Combining herbs helps balance the body and allows us to treat the entire body. At Whole Family Health, we have extensive knowledge of traditional Chinese medicine. Our high-quality herbs have been properly tested and are safe for consumption. Talk to us about how Chinese herbal medicine can help you.

Nutrition and Diet

Having a well-balanced diet full of many nutrients can help with chronic pain symptoms because many foods contain pain-relieving nutrients. It is best to include foods that boost feel good serotonin levels, increase analgesic, and anti-inflammatory properties.

When you eat foods high in tryptophan this increases the serotonin production in your brain helping you to feel less pain.

Foods that contain tryptophan include:

  • Whole grain rice and breads
  • Oats
  • Bananas
  • Mango
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Chickpeas
  • Red meat
  • Turkey
  • Tuna

Foods that contain vitamin B6 have analgesic attributions by reducing the perception of pain by inhibiting pain signals from entering the brain.

Foods high in vitamin B6 include:

  • Spinach
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Bell peppers
  • Asparagus
  • Bananas
  • Avocados
  • Watermelon
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Chicken
  • Beef

Foods that contain anti-inflammatory properties reduce redness, swelling, pain, and decreased motor function that is important in the recovery process.

These foods include:

  • Broccoli
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Raspberries
  • Blueberries
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Sesame seeds
  • Salmon
  • Herring
  • Tuna

Also, it is important to moderate the intake of animal protein in our diets. Animal protein from meats and dairy contain a fatty acid called arachidonic acid and this produces a prostaglandin PGE2. When there is an excess amount of PGE2 in the body it causes pain and inflammation to increase making chronic pain conditions worse.

Lifestyle and Mind-Body Medicine

Mind-Body therapies may be useful in finding relief and coming to better understand underlying the thoughts and emotions around the individual psychological life experience. Mindfulness exercises, creative arts exercise, yoga, and guided imagery can all be extremely beneficial in depression treatment.

In addition to acupuncture and nutrition, learning relaxation techniques are greatly beneficial to general health and wellbeing. Chronic, or acute, lifestyle stress can have a wide variety of negative effects on the body, including reproductive organ blood flow and hormone regulation. Physical and psychological stress can make existing symptoms worse and delay overall internal healing.

Techniques that elicit the relaxation response (a state of deep relaxation in which the heart rate, blood pressure and breathing rate decrease, muscle tension relaxes, stress hormone levels fall, and the mind becomes tranquil), and relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga may aid greatly in bringing balance to mental and emotional states. Practicing focused deep-breathing, meditation, yoga, tai-chi and other activities are among those that can increase your chances of a healthy life and pregnancy. Listening to music, focused breathing, or being outside in nature are also effective methods of managing stress.