Thursday, July 17, 2014

Do Inversion Tables Really Work?

I started having back problems at the age of 11. I was a competitive swimmer, and couldn't stand to hold my kick board out in front of me during kicking sets because of the pain I felt in my back. But nobody really listened, because I was so young. When I was in my mid-20s I received free chiropractor visits from a new office opening up, and found out that I already had degenerating discs in my lower back.

I got married, had babies, and even though my back problems were really bad before I had kids, for some reason they went away for years after having them. Then out of the blue, they were back. Now I am 43 and it's something I have to stay on top of, or stay in bed. Here is what I have learned...

First, the more I sit still, the worse my back hurts. I discovered this while under chiropractic care, when I moved to a new house. We took a month to move, since it was just a few miles away. I couldn't believe my back was causing me no trouble with all the lifting and moving, and I reported to my chiropractor what was going on. He was not surprised, as he knew that sitting, or not  moving much, is what leads to most people's problems.

Another thing that I've learned is that chiropractic care does work. Almost every time I've gone in, I've come out with almost complete relief. I remember suffering for three weeks before I finally went in with a "crick" in my neck, where the chiropractor fixed it immediately. I felt so stupid for waiting!

Another thing I've learned is that I can't afford chiropractic care like what I need. I had to find a way to stay out of the chiropractor's office as much as possible. I couldn't afford to move every month so I had to find another way! At some point, the inversion table came across my path. It made sense to invest in it without ever trying it, because if it could help me avoid chiropractor visits, it would pay for itself in a couple of months.

So I got a Teeter Hang Ups Inversion Therapy Table and put it together. Yes, it worked. Not only did it feel really good while on it, it also felt good afterward. Sometimes I can feel little "pops" in my lower back, which are less painful than the "pops" experienced at the chiropractor. Sometimes, just the expanding and opening up of the spine is enough to provide relief. I've also had problems with my neck, which have been relieved while using the inversion table as well.

During the past couple of days, I've been walking on a concrete floor, which always promotes leg, foot, and back pain for me. After five hours of this, I went home with horrible back pains, believing for sure I would have to make a chiropractor appointment. I got on my inversion table, and the pain was gone ten minutes later!

Now, I'm not going to pretend that the inversion table is all fun and games. Some days, I can hardly do it because it's so uncomfortable to my head and eyes. There is a danger of popping blood vessels in the eyes of some people. Most days, it is fine, but other days are just not good. I'm not sure what controls this. On the difficult days, I go back less, or work up to more and more as my body adjusts. But on other days, I can go right back and completely vertical with no problem.

If you are in the same boat as me, I would give the inversion table a try. Or better yet, see if you have a friend that has one so you can try it out before you buy your own. My goal is to live pain-free as well as avoid surgery. And thankfully, it looks like it's saving me money. I still go to the chiropractor from time to time, but I'm hoping one day it won't be necessary at all. As long as I avoid surgery, I'll be happy!

P.S. I can't believe I forgot to mention this! If you are having back or neck pain, try this: Get a sandwich bag, put in 8 pieces of ice (I'm not sure why, but it does specify EIGHT). Apply to the painful area, directly on skin, for 20 minutes EXACTLY. Repeat every hour as needed. It works, better than Advil!

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