“It’s spinal!” – Mike Tyson
This weekend (Labor Day) marks the one year anniversary of my recent battle with chronic back pain. Historically, my back and I have had a volatile relationship since high school but last Labor Day Weekend (2017), after experiencing severe pain from spending a couple of days standing and watching my son play soccer at a tournament then spending all Sunday morning standing on the set of a film shoot, I checked into the Chiropractic Spine Center and was diagnosed with a herniated disk (the one between L5 and Sacrum).
After a couple of months of PT and adjustments (still miss that hydrotherapy), the intense pain from pressure on the sciatic nerve and lower back eased, but never went away. At this, my Dr. suspected something else was awry. I went in for x-ray which proved his Spidey sense that, sure enough, I’ve lost almost all of the tissue from lowest disk, aka Degenerative Disk Disease! My arch-villain was unmasked!
Thus began more PT, decompression and stimulation therapy. Through all of this, I finally started exercising regularly, mainly because I found that it’s one of the few things that made the pain better and allowed me to move without wincing and moaning (that and CBD oil). I have finally ended therapy after one year of setbacks and progress. While DDD is considered irreversible and will possibly only get worse over time, today I can truly say that I am able to wake up without intense pain (still some but not terrible), can tie my shoes without cursing, and am able to drive more than thirty minutes without experiencing sciatic nerve pain. I’m currently winning this round but the fight will continue. This reminds me that I’m not the only one with this problem, there are a lot of people out there that suffer chronic pain, some never seeing relief. Through all of this I consider myself fortunate; fortunate that I can walk, refer to experts when needed, and have options for how much need to stand or walk and rest. Please, if you are a sufferer of chronic pain, or know someone that is, I’m thinking of you and praying for you and hope that one day you can get ahead of the pain and see some relief.