“You Can Take Rolaids, Or You Can Change Your Life!”
Everyone experiences pain. It is part of the process of being alive. Pain can motivate us to make changes in our lives. But, for someone else it can demotivate just as efficiently. It can move us to change our lives, or to end them. How we face pain, and how we deal with it, how we heal it or escape it – can define how we experience ourselves. It can drive how we interact with our environment, our jobs, and our loved ones. Pain takes energy to manage. Pain can also be expensive. Our country spends $85.9 billion in an attempt to treat neck and back pain alone. This amount is as much as we spend on every single police force in every city and town of the United States. It also amounts to approximately $2,000 for everyone living in this country. I am ready to get my check, how about you? In 2012, the drug industry spent over $27 billion on drug promotion. They spent more than $24 billion on marketing to physicians and over $3 billion on advertising to consumers, mainly through television commercials. This leaves no doubt that many people deal with pain by avoiding it all costs. Also there is no shortage of people willing to sell escape through drugs. There is also no shortage of people who are more than happy to profit from your instinct to avoid pain.
When we experience pain, it is often our first instinct is to move quickly away from it. This is the primal instinct or reflex that pulls our hand away from the fire or hot stove. It prevents us from doing stupid things – twice. (Or at least we hope it does) But, when that pain becomes chronic, this is another beast altogether. Pain at that point is a more complex messenger. What happens when we are at the point we can no longer run away from the source of pain? That is when the important decisions start being made. Chronic pain can become a message we get tired of hearing.
At this point, pain becomes a messenger. Whether or not we listen to the message is up to us. Problems can begin when we look at our pain as the problem itself instead of a message telling us something is WRONG. Think of the oil light in your car. For a moment, think of your headache as the oil light on the dashboard. Is the light the problem? There are plenty of options for you. You can ignore the light. You can cover up the light so you don’t see it any longer. Or, you can take care of the problem. Now which one of these choices is going to be the best one for the health and longevity or your car engine? The answer is obvious right? If you cover up or ignore the problem, it is not going to go away. The same is true for discomfort you feel in your body. That pain is a message.
Let’s look at a few things your body could be telling you when you feel discomfort.
Say for example that you work at a desk. You sit there all day with your chin propped onto your hand and elbow looking at a computer, your head is in a forward position and you are slumped down. Most people would understand in this story how a person might feel some neck pain, pain between the shoulder blades or low back. Maybe even headache.
Will Advil fix this problem? Let’s say you are a runner and you start to experience knee pain. The drug commercials would have you believe that if you take their pill or potion, you will feel better, the problem will be solved. You are good to go and run that marathon. Right? Is that really true? No wonder so many people wind up with knee replacements and hip replacements. If the front end of the car is out of alignment, the tires are going to wear out. It is as simple as that. If there is a problem in the knee, taking a pill is not going to help. Not really.
I had an interesting conversation with a patient the other day. He simply could not understand when I mentioned to him that the headache was not the cause of his problem but instead a symptom. He thought that since his diagnosis was headache, that was what his problemm was. In a way, he was right. He perceived the headache was the problem. And, of course he did have a headache, but why? Headache can have many causes. The cause is the true problem. Just for fun, I will name a few causes of headache. Headache can be caused by: high blood pressure, low blood sugar, stress, cervical tension, brain tumor, altitude, drug reaction, food or other allergy, spinal subluxation (misalignment) and hormone imbalance to name a few. Will OTC medication solve these problems? Of course not. But, it may help us put the problem aside long enough to forget about it.
Pain can also have hidden causes. It can be emotional. This does not mean it is “all in your head.” It’s not. It means that somehow, somewhere, sometime in your life you were overwhelmed. Your nervous system could not handle the amount of stress you were or are under and it had to blow a circuit breaker. Emotional pain can be physical or mental. How many people do you know now who are on antidepressants? How many of these people do you think if they had a job they loved and a great social network and a strong sense of purpose in life would still be on the antidepressant? Most of us are aware that low back pain can be caused by emotional stress. It can be the result of the “unfelt.” The unfelt can be a powerful agent to create change in our lives. This is an important concept. When we can reallly feel the commonly unfelt emotions in our lives, we can begin healing our pain and our lives can start moving to new heights of wellness. I am not criticizing treating symptoms. There is a time and a place for everything. But, at some point we must empower ourselves to make positive changes in our life. Then we can move beyond our old patterns of destruction. When we can put our lives back on track and feel on purpose, we can eliminate a lot of suffering from our lives and the lives of others. Physically as well as mentally.
I remember an old Rolaids ad where there was a businessman sitting at a desk. On his desk were stacks and stacks of unfinished work, half empty coffee cups and 2 cigarettes lit and smoking. The message was simple, “You Can Take Rolaids, Or You Can Change Your Life!” That ad really stuck with me. I only saw it one time and I can see why. It probably caused quite a stir and had to be removed. That is also the essential question. Do we take Rolaids, or do we change our life:
When your chiropractor shows you a program to move to optimum wellness within your body and nervous system what do you think? Looks expensive right? Chiropractic low back cases can cost $400-2,000 for weeks or months of hands on care. Too much? Take a look below at the potential cost of putting off making changes in your life and your health. Chiropractic care effects the cause. It relieves pressure on the nerves and tissue. It helps restore the natural tone and oscillation to the connective tissue and memory stored in your physical being. It helps you be more self aware and self healing. The side effect is health.
Average cost of Lumbar MRI: $900-1,500 (remember an MRI is only diagnostic and includes no treatment)
Average cost of steroid injection: $500-700 each. These are not proven effective for long term effectiveness.
Here are some prices for neck and back surgery:
Anterior cervical fusion: $44,000
Cervical fusion: $19,850
Decompression surgery: $24,000
Lumbar laminectomy: $18,000
Lumbar spinal fusion: $34,500
Is this what you want? No wonder our insurance premiums are so high!
Do you have symptoms? What do they mean? What will it take to help you become healthier so your symptoms and pain go away as a “side effect.” What changes can you make to day to help you feel better and be more productive and lead a more meaningful life with less suffering? There is not promise that making good choices and changing your life will end or lessen your suffering. However, will you not be a better person as a result? Will you not feel more in touch with your higher self?
Contact our office today and see how we can help you to move towards better health in a natural and holistic way.
link to cost effectiveness of chiropractic care reports