Naturopathic and holistic health articles

Back Pain: An Integrative Approach

Back pain is one of the most common reasons people seek medical treatment – through either conventional or naturopathic medicine techniques. Each pain management approach offers different benefits, which is why Southwest Integrative Medicine offers elements of both. In fact, this team of Phoenix doctors addresses a wide range of physical ailments with treatments ranging from acupuncture to I.V. nutrient therapy.

If you suffer from back pain, then you have something in common with more than 80 percent of the population. That's how many people will experience it at some point in their lives – usually lower back pain brought on by stress and strain.

Yet for something so common, effective remedies for back pain within conventional medicine alone are few and far between. One of the most common "solutions" is prescription painkillers. Though beneficial when used in conjunction with other treatments, painkillers do little good on their own. After all, what's the point of treating the symptom if you never get to the cause?

Physiotherapy is another common treatment for back pain – essentially prescribing specific exercises intended to improve your mobility. However, studies now show that physiotherapy alone is no more effective at alleviating back pain than regular exercise.

One proven way of getting to the cause of back pain is through acupuncture, an alternative medicine technique involving the insertion of hair-thin stainless steel needles into the skin. Originating in China thousands of years ago, acupuncture's goal is to balance the flow of energy, or "Qi," in the body. This is done by strategically placing these needles at various points along the body's main energy channels, or meridians, where the Qi blockage is believed to be.

Local acupuncture treatment involves the insertion of the needles at the point of pain. However, the sensation of pain in the back may actually stem from somewhere else in the body, requiring distal acupuncture treatment – the insertion of needles on an area other than the point of pain.

So whether yours is back pain associated with a sprain or strain, herniated disc, sciatica or any other condition, acupuncture may be able to help – on its own or when combined with conventional approaches like physiotherapy and prescription medications.

Of course, just as with any other medical procedure, acupuncture should be preceded by a full medical history and physical exam, including tongue, pulse and diagnostic techniques unique to this particular holistic approach. Southwest Integrative Medicine typically performs these tests during the initial consultation. Simply submit their online contact form to schedule your first visit today.

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Southwest Integrative Medicine hopes the preceding article has been helpful to you. The reason for its inclusion on our website is to provide you with valuable information on improving your health. In the future, we’ll continue to include pieces that inspire you to make smart, healthy choices. Are you looking for an easier, natural way to control your weight? Are you living with a painful condition or illness that conventional medicine has been unable to treat effectively? Are you concerned about the impact of diabetes, cholesterol or high blood pressure on your heart? Then you may want to give Southwest Integrative Medicine a try. This team of Phoenix-based doctors treats a wide range of health issues with a combination of alternative and conventional medicine techniques – from acupuncture to IV nutrient therapy. Thanks for visiting, and be sure to come back regularly for more informative, inspiring articles on how to ensure that you and your loved ones are able to create and maintain the kind of healthy lifestyle you want and deserve.