When Back Pain Turns Your Life Upside Down
In the book Evidence-Based Management of Low Back Pain, authors describe traction therapy as a broad term used to refer to several methods of using mechanical force to separate the lumbar vertebrae along the inferosuperior axis of the spine. Traction can be used to provide hours of pain relief. It is known to be a safe procedure with therapeutic value in helping patients with spine-related pain.
In the 1980s, my parents purchased this wild contraption as exercise equipment. It really turned into a bit of a toy and lots of laughs. The ever popular boys bowl hair cut had a little help with our inversion table, as my mother could just flip my brother upside down to make sure his whispy bangs and hair were even. My pint sized mother couldn’t get on it alone, because her barely 100 pound body couldn’t get herself back up and was stuck hanging there upside down full of laughter and panic while she cried out for help!
I had nearly forgotten about inversion tables altogether until 2016 when I started experiencing another bout of chronic back pain after spending 3 hours in the car each weekday on my commute. I had moved in with a friend who was a fitness guru. When he caught me stretching and wincing one day, he said he had something I should try.
I could immediately feel the pressure release from my back. He had a more Heavy Duty Inversion Table and it took up quite a bit of room. Years later when I was shopping for an inversion table of my own, I was thrilled to see more compact style tables for my small studio apartment.
During the months following COVID quarantines that swept the nation, I found myself in dire need of relief at home. Doctors appointments and procedures were being cancelled and I was still suffering with debilitating flare ups. I remembered my spine surgeon suggesting an inversion table 2 months prior, but I was in the process of moving from a small apartment into an even smaller studio, so I had put it off. The month I purchased my inversion table, I noticed immediate relief. Even 8 months later, it is my go to option for pain relief.
The strides that have been made in inversion tables since the 1980s have been amazing. If you are looking for something to add to your daily routine for stretching and traction to help with your chronic back pain, you can find heated and massage options now like the Innova ITM5900 Advanced Heat and Massage Inversion Therapy Table.