Friday, July 25, 2008
If you ever suffered from lower back pain as I did then you should be familiar with the inconvenience that back problems cause. Fifteen years ago I tried to lift a very heavy slab of cement and a few days later I experienced severe lower back pain that lasted for over a month. I went to the doctor, took x-rays, and found out that the disk between the last two vertebrae was compressed, but nothing unusual. There was no herniated disk or anything like that, and the pain did not shoot down my leg as sciatica patients suffer from. As a cure, I had to lay on my back for extended periods of time, or walk around. Standing or sitting were bad. The pain eventually disappeared, but not completely. I continue to have recurrences of pain now and then which usually come unannounced and without any apparant reason I could notice.
I made my first visit to a chiropractor a few months later and took another set of x-rays. I started physical therapy sessions, three times a week. The chiropractor used a special table that had a shape of an inverted V with a hinge in the middle. I would lie my stomach on the table and he would tie my ankles at one end and my wrists at the other end, then he would start a machine that caused the table to open and close, thereby stretching my spine each time it closed. He pressed the lower vertebrae with his fingers while the table was opening and closing, and man that felt so good. I could feel instant relief in my lower back each time I used that table.
Of course the chiropractor expected me to continue with these sessions indefinitely, just like the regular dental checkups, but for me the cost of those sessions was prohibitive.
With time I got used to living with sporadic backache that would appear suddenly every now and then without a notice, but I kept looking for the ultimate cure. During my quest, I discovered Aspecreme which relieved the pain as it acted as localized aspirin. I also discovered that stretching helped a lot, especially touching my toes with my palms while keeping my knees straight. I learned a few other exercises that helped some. But recently I found the ultimate solution that is better than anything else I knew before: The inversion table! This table allows you to hang from your ankles upside down, relieving the pain off your back instantly, while stretching your compressed vertebrae effectively and without the need of a chiropractor - see the picture. I bought a high quality table that can lock at different angles instead of just the upside position, and it works great. I immediately felt the relief in my back. Kudos to the inventor of this table. I wonder how the chiropractors never told me about this machine. I heard chiropractors and health physicians don't really believe that the inversion therapy is effective at all, which is quite surprising to me, because I tried it myself and I know it is effective, but come to think of it, if all their patients used that machine then they would have no business at all. Now that incentive enough for them to reject it.
Well I tried it and I liked it, and I know I will continue to use it. It is easy to use, convenient and does not cost anything except for the initial investment of its price. I had to start with low inclination angles and gradually increase the angle because the first time I tried it I went quickly all the way upside down and I felt dizzy afterwards. Beware that with the upside position the pressure inside your head rises very quickly to high levels. You have to train your head to take it step by step, until eventually you get used to gravity reversal. Other than that, I think this inversion table is the best cure for backaches, and should be considered first before any other measures are taken. I know it works because I used it. So go ahead and try it and let me know what you think.