When an alarm sounds it is a sign something is wrong. Pain is also a sign. It is the body saying “Hey, there is something not right. It needs looking at!” What do we do when we experience pain? Most people look for pain relief usually in the form of medication because it is convenient. When they do that they are turning off the alarm without considering the cause of the pain.

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Currently the most common approach to musculoskeletal health is based on clearing signs or in the case of our bodies, symptoms. The problem with this way forward is that the source of the symptom or the cause of the problem is not being dealt with. It is a very short term view. This might get you through to where you want to be initially but long term very little gets resolved.


Like putting a bucket under the drops from a leaking roof, if you have no intention of repairing the roof then the damage the water causes to the structure and fabric of the building will be more significant in time. Things will worsen. So too your spine. A back problem left untreated will worsen in time. Degeneration quicker than the natural ageing process will occur or, put another way, the body will age more quickly.


Correcting problems associated with symptoms such as back pain needs a longer term view. This may mean having the foresight to get treatment even when there is little or no pain. If you wait for your car to breakdown before you get it serviced then you’ve waited too long. If you allow pain to carry on like your leaking roof the problem will worsen. The roof doesn’t leak when the weather is dry but the hole is still there. Your back may not hurt all the time either but the source of the pain is still there.


So next time you take a tablet for relief of pain or just carry on, take a moment to consider, is this symptom telling you something needs looking at properly or do you take the risk and carry on regardless?