Back pain can develop and worsen for a number of reasons, including injury, accident, or as a result of another disease. Part of the treatment for back pain may include a number of devices such as braces, orthotics, and implants.
Devices for back pain are most often braces that are generally used to support a healing spine or prevent further injury. These braces can range from larger braces that reach from the middle of the hip to underneath the shoulders to smaller braces that focus solely on the affected area.
For people with a progressive disease of the spine such as scoliosis, braces can slow or sometimes halt the progression of the disease, but they will generally allow the spine to revert to its shape when removed. The more a person wears a prescribed brace, the better the result. Braces also limit the range of motion which can be helpful for healing, especially in the case of a strain or injury that is causing back pain.
Orthotics address a totally separate part of the body that can cause or worsen back pain: the feet.
Often, people will have a gait or a foot structure that puts undue pressure on their back. For example, people with flat feet will tend to stand further back on their heels which can flatten out the natural curves in the lower back and cause pain. There are a number of ways to get orthotics. There are inserts for shoes available at most drug stores, or podiatrists can analyze a person’s foot structure and make recommendations.
Finally, implants are a type of device that are more invasive but can offer long-term relief from back pain. One such device is a spinal cord stimulator (SCS). This device sends electrical impulses to the spine, blocking the nerves’ ability to feel the pain signals the back is sending to the brain.
Living with back pain can be debilitating and interfere with daily life. Braces, orthotics, and implants offer another way to fight back.
Have you used devices for back pain, such as braces or orthotics, to manage or treat your pain? What worked best for you?
Image by Ephemeral Scraps via Flickr