Are you suffering disability from lower back pain? There is help. Most lower back problems can be cured and those which can’t be fully resolved are still virtually always manageable with proper treatment. However, many patients are on the wrong path when it comes to how they are treating their pain, often worsening their conditions and resulting in the disability that they now face.
Functional disability and legal disability are 2 completely different things. The scope of this article focuses on the former, functional disability, since this is objective and not subject to the ridiculous definitions and whims of unenlightened governmental agencies.
This discussion covers the sensitive topic of disability that results from lower back pain. We will detail the circumstances that can create disability and the consequences it can have on patients’ lives. Finally, we will provide some important guidance for patients who want to regain physical functionality, despite currently being impaired due to chronic lower back pain.
Causes of Disability from Lower Back Pain
Disability can result from a diversity of diagnosed conditions, as well as general idiopathic lower back pain. Any condition that prevents a person from functioning normally can be considered partially disabling, while conditions which prevent any semblance of physical functionality can be considered completely disabling. The most common causes of functional disability in the lower back include all of the following diagnosed conditions:
Central spinal stenosis or multiple levels of severe neuroforaminal stenosis can disable the nerve roots of the cauda equina, potentially causing severe sciatica, as well as bowel and bladder issues and the inability to stand, walk or perform many basic life activities.
Severe grade 4 spondylolisthesis can prevent normal spinal movement and threaten neurological functionality to a large degree in some patients.
Very severe lumbar scoliosis might be disabling when the spine shifts and twists in such as way as to disable neurological signals.
Very rare and extreme versions of lumbar hyperlordosis can destroy posture and prevent typical useful functionality in some patients.
It should be noted that most disc-related conditions, such as herniations and degeneration, should not be disabling. This is also true of facet joint pain syndromes, as the nerves affected are small and localized.
Disability from Low Back Pain Consequences
Disability causes a wide range of possible consequences on its victims, including ramifications that affect both mind and body:
Disabled people might not be able to work in their chosen profession or may be incapable of working at all. This can have devastating effects on anyone’s life and may put some patients into desperate financial situations.
Limited physical functionality often results in weight gain and possible obesity. These factors dispose patients towards other systemic problems, such as high blood pressure, diabetes and general health risks,
Disabled people might not be capable of taking care of family responsibilities, particularly if they have young children who require active care. Some parents must place their children with friends or family to ensure that they will be taken care of properly.
Depression, low self esteem and general dissatisfaction with life are typical psychoemotional effects of chronic pain disability.
Disability is worse in situations where the victim is not protected by a social safety net or some type of benefit program to help them to survive.
Disability from Lower Back Pain Guidance
Virtually all structural issues that result in disability can be treated, as long as the patient has access to a range of quality healthcare services. Some cases of disability from lower back pain might only require conservative care to resolve, such as the implementation of physical therapy. Other cases might necessitate more dramatic interventions, such as spinal decompression therapy or even lumbar spinal surgery. However, most structural issues should be fixable.
A significant percentage of disabled patients actually have nothing wrong with their anatomies. Sure, many have been told that their pain is due to some incidental structural issue, but statistics clearly show that most chronic lower back pain is misdiagnosed. The true reason for the pain is often a mindbody syndrome that can have truly debilitating effects on life and physical function. Dr. John E. Sarno details many cases of complete disability in his various books on the subject of tension myositis syndrome. All these patients usually need is redirection in their treatment plan to enjoy full cures using appropriate mindbody therapies.
For patients with rare and incurable conditions, optimal forms of pain management can drastically improve the quality of life and physical functionality. Patients should investigate all their options and focus on nonpharmaceutical practices whenever possible. Pain coaching is a proven method of relief that matches drug therapies in efficacy, but does not create any negative health consequences. In fact, coaching teaches positive life skills that enhance a person, rather than damage them.
You can enjoy a combined approach to preventing, managing and curing pain by using our proprietary and peer acclaimed pain relief program. It is available online to help you 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world.