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Back Problems Message Board

Back Problems Board Index

I read a lot of spinal back problem related posts here and at other sites and I've just signed on possibly hoping to help some people who are desperately suffering from spinal pain similar to what I've suffered and am mostly free of now and getting better.

I've suffered from a severe lower back pain and lesser upper back pain for awhile and getting worse each year. I've visited chiropractors and acupuncturists and did tons of back exercises like superman and bridges without any relief from pain. The exercises sure made my back and butt muscular, but did not help at all as far as my spinal pain was concerned.
On a scale of 1-10, my pain level was at 7, needing Advil almost everyday, but I suffered through some days without it, thinking I am surely headed for a back surgery within a few years as the pain got worse every year.

Out of desperation, in June 2018, I had a MRI related to an acupuncturist's ad just to see what state what my spine was in and get diagnosed without hoping too much about any kind of relief from pain.
MRI results said:
1.posterior disc bulge, 3-4MM at L4-5, impinging L5nerve roots bilaterally.
2.posterior disc bulge, 2-3MM,at L3-4 and L5-S1 disc levels.
3.degenerative disc disease, L1-2, L2-3, and L5-S1disc levels.
4.anterior disc bulge, 2-3MM, at L1-2, L2-3, and L3-4 disc levels.
and "straightening of the lumbar spine and the loss of the normal lordotic curvature." The discs at L3,4,5 were dark as opposed to showing as healthy white like other discs because all the soft centers were gone and only outside shells remained. I was depressed and sapped of energy when the acupuncturist went over the MRI results with me.

He said don't worry he can make me feel better for sure and told me to lie down with a semi hard cylindrical cushion under my lower back for about 10 minutes(which is very painful by the way because my spine lost that "normal lordotic curvature", so I keep shifting the cushion) After 10 minutes, he told me to lie on my stomach and do the bow pose, reaching back and grabbing your ankles like in yoga! I couldn't do it at first, but as I relaxed and got used to it, I was able to hold the pose for a few seconds at a time. I thought he was crazy, but I was desperate and nothing worked before anyway. He told me do this routine for total of at least 1 hour everyday. I went home, Googled and checked out on the internet about bow pose, including using some rope to help at first, and did 1 hour in the morning and 1 hour in the evening for about a week. My pain wasn't immediately relieved, but it wasn't getting worse, so I keep doing it for 1 hour(10 to 30 seconds at a time, relax 2or3 minutes) a day from second week. After about 10 days, I suddenly noticed my pain level went down from about 7 to about 2 level! I couldn't believe it.
As of August 2018, I don't feel any pain just moving around normally, except when doing extreme movement. By the way, I saw the acupuncturist treating a neck pain patient by telling him to lie down and using only a neck pillow the size of only one's forearm thick from now on when sleeping. He said use only a cylindrical neck pillow you can make with a rolled up tower, just like for your lower back for lying down or sitting.
What I noticed from my experience with this acupuncturist was that he was trying to restore the "normal lordotic curvature" of the spine and the neck.
I think doing the bow pose kind of restored my lower back curvature just enough so that bulging disc pressing into my spine nerve "backed up" or went back to its original place just enough to give me relief from pain. All it needs to move back is only about 2-3 MM for my case. This worked for my condition. If you have MRI and similar posterior bulging disc problems and nothing else worked, then ...
I do the bow pose everyday, when I watch tv, I lie down with a rolled up tower or cushion under my lower back. I also have lower back support in my car and use only a thin cylindrical neck pillow. You can make your own by sewing or rolling up towers or cushions.
As of 9/18/2018, I have no pain whatsoever as long as I maintain general C-curvature in my lower back all the time. When I have to bend down to pick up something, I widen my stance, bend my knees mostly and slightly lower my upper body while maintaining C-curvature in my lower back.
I still do Bow pose about 20 minutes in the evening. But sometimes I just do Cobra pose. Even when I am not doing these I might watch tv lying down with a lower back support cylindrical cushion or rolled up tower. I am constantly trying to restore and maintain my natural curvature of my back and neck now. Even in my car or chair.
By the way, when I used to be in pain, I used to lie down and bring my knees to chest to relieve some pain. DON'T do this. While you bring your knees to chest, it may feel better at that moment because ruptured disc may pull back slightly from pressing your nerve when the space between the vertebrae widens. But you shouldn't widen the backside of the vertebrae by bending forward or bringing your knees to chest. It will only give disc even more wider space/ wider angle of the vertebrae to go toward the nerve. Also don't do the neck pulling thing for the same reason.
You need to do the opposite!. Cobra pose or Bow pose to restore the natural lordotic curvature of the back we were all born with and must maintain.
I also have a slight scoliosis toward my right side and pain was getting noticeable in my upper back as my lower back condition was getting worse. But now, even that pain is gone.
I don't think my discs have been cured or repaired. I know at least 3 discs have lost the soft centers with only shells remaining. It feels very stiff around that area, but at least I am pain free.
I hope my experience could help somebody.

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