Posted on 5 November 2013 in Back Pain by Dr. John Dawson
Dr. John Dawson

People who care about pain care about pain while people who care about health care about health. There is a massive distinction between the two.

People who care about pain only pay attention to it when it affects activities of daily living. People who care about pain only care about it as long as it exists and give it little thought otherwise—simply caring about your pain, and wanting it to go away, does not make an individual concerned about health.

People who care about health pay constant attention to activities of daily living without pain being the motivator. Health is a concept that constantly revolves around what you do and how you do it every day. Unfortunately, health is not a great motivator, being healthy takes effort, and being healthy is a choice that constantly needs to be chosen.

Responding to pain is REACTIVE. Choosing to be healthy is PROACTIVE.

After you go to the gym once are you fit? After you go to the gym ten times are you fit? Once you are fit does that mean you can stop going to gym and you will be fit forever? The answer is no. This does not mean you have to go to the gym every day for the rest of your life to be healthy. This is just an example of how your health is something that is in constant motion and changes every day based on you and your choices. How you manage your health is based on the number of times you choose to exercise or eat healthy foods. Disregarding your health will eventually lead to it becoming unmanageable by you alone and you will require help.

Too many times I hear, 'I will do whatever it takes. I have had enough of this and I have to get this sorted. Just tell me what to do and I'll do it. I know I need to change and I realize now I have to.'

But, once the pain is gone, so is the 'whatever it takes' and the 'change'. And, the patient is gone as well—some even returning again in six months REACTING to the same PAIN related problem.

On the other hand there are cases where I do hear, 'I do my stretches and that gives me great relief. Overall I feel a lot better. I don't exercise every day but the diet changes have made a huge difference. I want to stay on top of things.' That patient recognises that a life style change was required, identified what that lifestyle change was, and continues to be PROACTIVE about HEALTH.

I hope this post has helped to show that caring about PAIN does not make you HEALTHY and caring about HEALTH might change the way you feel about PAIN. Please feel free to contact the clinic to discuss this further.