Have you ever been dealing with an injury and question “why am I not better by now, why am I still feeling this pain and why can’t I get back to my usual routine?”. If this sounds familiar, you’ve had an injury and expected your body to heal quickly. You started therapy, made some progress and decided to return to your activity but then end up hurting just as much as before. This causes frustration to set in, you feel like you have made no progress and you may feel like cancelling your treatments as they don’t seem to be helping. I come across this roadblock with patients and I find myself having the same conversation. An injury is not a linear journey and it is not always a simple path to reach the end. When something is wrong with your car, you drop it at the mechanic and pick it up once it is fixed. When you have a new car this fix can be simple and quick but the more miles it has on it and the older it gets, the longer and more complex the fix can be. Our bodies work in the same capacity. Variables such as severity of the injury, age of the patient, lifestyle demands, health status, etc all contribute to determining the prognosis, healing time and setbacks that may occur.
This can be discouraging but it is important to remember that just because you may have a bad day or a setback with your injury does not mean you have lost progression. We all have expectations after an injury that the treatment process will be straight forward and you will resume all activities before you know it. This is not always the case as there will be obstacles in our path, and there may be setbacks along the way but being prepared for this will make it much easier to accept and you will feel less frustrated. We all have to be realistic that when coping with an injury we still have the demands of everyday life. Although bending forward may irritate your low back pain and you have been told to avoid that movement, you may have no choice but to lift your child out of the crib. Yes, this will most likely create some irritation in your back but this is why setbacks occur and bad days will happen along your road to recovery.