How can you find the right support?

There are many different healthcare professionals that can help you find long-term back pain relief.

Physicians

Family doctor

This is probably the first person you’ll talk to about your back pain. You may also get a referral to a specialist, like a rheumatologist, depending on what type of back pain you have or if other conditions are involved.

Rheumatologist

A rheumatologist is a specialist that is an expert in inflammatory conditions. They may also have more experience with certain types of pain management than other professionals. Patients who are suspected to have inflammatory back pain are usually referred to a rheumatologist.

Gastroenterologist

This doctor specializes in digestive health. For people who have inflammatory back pain, there is a chance that inflammation can also develop in the intestines.

Ophthalmologist

This specialist is an expert in treating eye conditions. You might visit them if you develop an eye condition related to inflammation called uveitis. Appointments are usually arranged through your family doctor.

Psychologist

The stress and anxiety of dealing with ongoing, chronic pain can take an emotional and mental toll. Back pain can cause stress, and stress can cause irritability and sleeplessness – which can also exacerbate pain and stress. Some people coping with chronic back pain may feel depressed or anxious. This is where assistance from a psychologist or psychiatrist can be important. They are equipped to help you manage the emotional distress you may be feeling.

OTHER EXPERTS

Physiotherapists focus on movement and may provide you with physical therapy to improve your physical function. They can be used alongside other back pain treatments or therapies for relief.

Occupational therapists help you set goals for daily living and work with your environment to make it easier for you to do the things that are important to you. No matter what type of back pain you have, their services can help in reducing back strain in everyday situations. 

Massage therapists specialize in relieving tension in your muscles, ligaments and tendons using massage. Massage therapy can be used as an additional measure to relieve back pain and strain. 

Chiropractors treat problems by moving the position of your joints. They can provide back pain relief and may be used alongside other therapies. 

Pharmacists are a good resource that you can turn to when you have questions about over-the-counter remedies and products that provide back pain relief, including potential side effects. 

Podiatrists provide specialized care for your feet. Corrective footwear or custom orthotics can help reduce the strain on the back for some people. 

Finding the right help

FAMILY AND FRIENDS

The support of those closest to you can make a difference. Here are ways your friends and family can help:

  • Doing everyday tasks. Whether it’s a ride to the doctor’s office or picking up a take-out order, enlist your loved ones to help with simple, everyday tasks.

  • Helping you take your mind off your back pain. Pain can take people away from doing the things they love, including having fun and socializing. But find time to enjoy your friends and family – this will help you manage the stress you might feel as a result of your back pain.

More than anyone, it’s important for YOU to stay engaged, informed and motivated to take care of your back pain – and your overall health. Information is power and, by coming to this website and learning about back health, you are taking positive steps to improve your situation.