When to Consult a Chiropractor for Upper Back Pain

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While upper back pain isn’t as common as lower back pain, it can still cause serious discomfort to some patients and affect their overall quality of life. Fortunately, there are a few ways to relieve chronic upper back pain even without surgery. Patients can always consult a pain management specialist or chiropractor to find the best upper back pain treatment.

So when should patients consult a chiropractor for their upper back pain? Chiropractors may perform a chiropractic adjustment on the thoracic spine for upper back pain relief. If you experience chronic pain, feel neck and shoulder pain, get involved in an accident, or notice redness, tightness, and swelling in your upper back, then it might be time to seek a chiropractor.

When to See a Chiropractor for Upper Back Pain

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 39% of American adults experience back pain. Although some people only experience mild pain and discomfort, it may be even worse for others – affecting their quality of life and preventing them from accomplishing simple everyday tasks.

Upper back pain is much less common than lower back pain, but it isn’t just something that people should just live with. Thoracic spine pain may be caused by a wide range of reasons like poor posture, muscle strain, joint dysfunction, pinched nerve, and others. However, it’s difficult to experience lasting relief without knowing the patient’s exact health condition.

For most people, chiropractic treatment is an effective option that leads to excellent results. Many studies highlight the role of chiropractic care and spinal adjustment when it comes to pain and muscle tension relief, so seeing a chiropractor for upper back pain is often a good decision.

Make sure to consult a trusted chiropractor nearby if you:

  • Experience intense pain that persists or worsens for at least 3 months even with chronic pain medication
  • Notice that your upper back appears red and swollen
  • Were recently involved in an accident
  • Experience neck pain along with upper back pain
  • Feel pain or discomfort that extends to the shoulder blades
  • Feel tight muscles in your back

Can a Chiropractor Help With Upper Back Pain?

The upper back is made up of several bones, joints, and muscles that interlace together and give the body the structural support it needs to function. But even if a single part of the upper back muscles or vertebrae becomes injured or inflamed, it results in a ripple effect that causes pain and discomfort to the patient. This can be especially problematic because it may lead to dysfunction that’s difficult to treat.

Chiropractors can help patients alleviate or manage their upper back pain through spinal manipulation. They may also perform other non-surgical treatments to help restore and improve functionality. Chiropractic care is focused on letting the body heal itself, so many patients experience long-lasting pain relief results with this alternative medicine.

What Does a Chiropractor Do for Upper Back Pain?

When chiropractors treat upper back pain, they examine how the back impacts other body parts first. During this initial evaluation, patients need to disclose their entire health history and tell the chiropractor about a past injury if there’s any. They take these things into account when creating the best treatment plan for their client.

A chiropractic care treatment plan may include different methods that are designed to rehabilitate the upper back function while relieving muscle spasms, inflammation, or tension. Here are some of the most common chiropractic treatments performed on patients with upper back pain:

  • Spinal adjustments – Chiropractic care is best known for manipulation treatments that manually restore the proper alignment of the spine. They’re meant to release stress, inflammation, and irritation that causes back pain.
  • Massage therapy – Chiropractic massage increases blood flow in the important tissues of the back. This treatment promotes healing and alleviates muscle stiffness for better pain relief. Massage also strengthens the muscles and tissues, preparing them for manual spinal manipulation.
  • Strengthening exercises – While massage and spinal adjustment provide immediate pain relief to the patient, they might not provide enough protection to the upper back against injuries. Strengthening exercises make the body less susceptible to injuries that might happen in the future.

Chiropractic Care and Upper Back Pain

The upper and middle back are unique body structures that are responsible for structural support and mechanical movement. Pain and discomfort in this part of the body can be disruptive, so it’s important to get the right treatment and diagnosis immediately.

If you’re considering consulting a chiropractor for upper back pain, here are some things to know first:

1) What’s the Difference Between Chiropractic Care and Physical Therapy?

While they’re both conservative pain relief treatments, chiropractic care and physical therapy have a few differences that make one better than the other in certain situations. Physical therapy involves different treatments that aim to improve an individual’s ability to move and function without pain.

On the other hand, chiropractic care is focused on alleviating pain and inflammation by manually manipulating certain parts of the body, most commonly the spine. Choosing between these two treatments depends on the patient’s needs, but there are also situations when they’re better utilized together for optimal results.

2) Is Upper Back Pain Chiropractor or Massage Better?

This depends on the cause of the patient’s upper back pain. Massage may provide instant pain relief as it alleviates muscle tension, but patients may still need a chiropractor to fix any spine misalignments. In most cases, it’s better to have both treatments together for better pain relief results.

3) Will a Chiropractor Cure Upper Back Pain?

Different patients may experience different results, but a chiropractor’s goal is to provide pain relief for as long as possible by targeting the root cause of upper back pain. However, there are some cases in which surgery, pain medication, and steroid injections are the best modes of treatment. Make sure to consult a doctor first to find out the best treatment option for you.

4) Neck, Upper Back Pain Worse With Chiropractic Care: Is it Normal?

Mild pain and soreness after chiropractic treatment are normal since the tissues around the spine are still adjusting to the spinal manipulation. But if the pain persists or worsens in the next few days or weeks, contact a medical professional immediately.

Get the Relief You Need With Gramercy Pain Center

Upper back pain can be particularly disruptive to your everyday life, but patients may choose chiropractic treatments to relieve pain and improve body function. Chiropractic care is a well-known alternative medicine because it provides long-lasting results without the need for surgery or medications.

At Gramercy Pain Center, we have a caring team of pain management professionals who can help you experience optimal pain relief. Depending on the patient’s condition and health history, we design the best non-surgical treatment plans that can get rid of the pain for good and help improve their quality of life. Call us now or visit any of our offices to start minimizing your pain and living your life to the fullest.

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