Skip to content

Getting Support When You Have Low Back Pain

Font Size

Topic Overview

When your back hurts all or most of the time, it can affect more than just your body. There's an emotional side to chronic pain. You may need a shoulder to cry on or someone to talk to. You need support.

Support groups—where you meet or talk to people who are dealing with the same issues you are—can be a great source of comfort and advice.

Recommended Related to Back Pain

What Is Your Back Pain Telling You?

You may have heard that it's our body's way of sending us a message. But when back pain first arrives, what it tells you may not be the truth -- or, at least, not the whole story.

Read the What Is Your Back Pain Telling You? article > >

Some support groups focus on education. These groups often are led by a professional, such as a teacher or a doctor who shares information about the problem. Other groups focus on support. They often include only people who have the same problem. These are called peer groups.

In a peer group, you'll find people who are going through the same things you are. You'll see that you're not the only one and that others have the same feelings and challenges as you. Group members can give you support, advice, and encouragement. You can see what is working for others and decide if it might work for you.

You can help others in the group by paying attention and letting them know you are listening and by sharing your thoughts. Your experiences and ideas may be new to them. Being able to help others is rewarding and helps you gain self-confidence.

Peer support may include consumer providers and consumer-run services.

  • A consumer provider is someone who has been trained to help others with the same type of problems. You can find consumer providers in clinics. Because they know what you have gone through, they can be good role models and coaches.
  • A consumer-run service is a group, or part of a group, in which people with the same problem provide services. These services include support groups, peer counseling, telephone help lines, and drop-in centers.

How to find a support group

Here are some ways to find support groups:

  • Ask other people who have chronic back pain.
  • Ask your doctor, counselor, or other health professional for suggestions.
  • Ask your religious leader. You can contact churches, mosques, synagogues, or other religious groups.
  • Ask your family and friends.
  • Contact a city, state, or national group for back pain or chronic pain. Your library, community center, or phone book may have a list.
  • Search the Internet. Forums, email lists, and chat rooms let you read messages from others and leave your own messages. You can exchange stories, let off steam, and ask and answer questions.

Look for a support group that works for you. Ask yourself if you prefer structure and would like a group leader, or if you'd like a less formal group. Do you prefer face-to-face meetings, or do you feel more secure in Internet chat rooms or forums?

1|2

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: March 12, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Getting Support When You Have Low Back Pain Topics

Hot Topics

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

disciplining a boy
Types, symptoms, causes.
psoriasis
What it looks like.
fruit drinks
Eat these to think better.
No gym workout
Moves to help control blood sugar.
acupuncture needle on shoulder
10 tips to look and feel good.
Close up of eye
12 reasons you're distracted.
Epinephrine Injection using Auto-Injector Syringe
Life-threatening triggers.
woman biting a big ice cube
Habits that wreck your teeth.
embarrassed woman
Do you feel guilty after eating?
pacemaker next to xray
Treatment options.
caregiver with parent
10 tips for daily life.
birth control pills
Which kind is right for you?

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.