Hi! Your Vineland chiropractor here. Just want to share a bit about myself and what I have put my body through over the years which in turn has led to back pain. How I manage my pain has been key to how I continue to live my life, do the things I love to do and to continue my profession in chiropractic.

Here is a bit of background information about myself: I am 49 years old and have been lifting weights since I was quite young. I’ve also done judo since I was 4 years old, and began jujitsu about 8 years ago. My normal weekly schedule looks like this: Lifting weights three days a week, Judo (a lot of throwing) three days a week, Jujitsu, (a lot of people tugging on my arms), surfing, and on Sunday, jogging as active rest. I also travel on a plane once per week, which tends to be uncomfortable.

Let’s talk about injuries. I have a herniated disc in my low back and neck, some carpal tunnel, a partially torn acl in my right knee, my left hip is beginning to hurt me a little bit, and a small amount of arthritis in my fingers.

I share my injuries with you to show you that it is possible to stay active while having injuries. I regularly compete at a high level, and I am able to keep up and keep my body in shape, allowing me to do the things that I love. In a way, this makes me good at my job because I have all these injuries. When a patient comes in with sciatica or their fingers are tingling or neck pain, I understand what they’re feeling because I’ve felt that same pain.

So I think it can be said that injuries shouldn’t stop you. I’ve seen too many patients get one injury and then cut everything out of their lives. There is 100 percent a time and place for healing and recovery, we still must be able to manage our injuries and pain.

Today’s tip on how to manage pain is decompressing of the spine. I know if I did not decompress my spine, I wouldn’t be able to do all of my favorite activities. If I went to a doctor and told them the right things, they would want to do surgery, because I would be a proper candidate. I am able to avoid surgery by decompressing my spine.

What is a number one way to decompress the spine you ask? This would be chiropractic adjustments or manipulations. This means cracking your back which loosens everything up and restores your range of motion which in turn takes the pressure off of the joints. If we don’t do this, your joints will degenerate at a faster pace, you’ll lose range of motion, it will get inflamed, and it will hurt. This means not being able to do any of the things you enjoy doing.

Personally, I get adjusted once a week, but this doesn’t mean you have to! When I am in competition, I especially make sure I am taking care of myself, but when I am taking it easier with my training, once per month works just fine. Chiropractic care is only one tool out of the many that can really help manage back pain. Check out our blog on this site for many other great ways of keeping pain at bay.