Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

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

Back Pain Solutions: Exercise and Movement Therapies

Being active is good for everyone, even if you have back pain. Some gentle types of exercises and movement therapies may help you get stronger, which could help you feel better. You may also need other medical treatment for your back pain; exercise alone may not be enough. But building your strength, especially in the muscles that support your back, is still a good idea. Before you get started, you may want to talk with your doctor about what activities are right for you. If you...

Read the Back Pain Solutions: Exercise and Movement Therapies 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: December 14, 2011
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

feet
Solutions for 19 types.
row of colored highlighter pens
Tips for living better.
oatmeal and eggs
The best and worst for you.
neti pot
6 steps for nasal irrigation.
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
stressed working woman
And how to fix them?
woman walking in fog
12 tips for managing your disease.
Healthy Snack
13 delicious options.
Woman running
10 ways to boost your metabolism.
lone star tick
How to identify that bite.
young woman in sun
What to watch for.
Colored x-ray of tooth decay
What are the top ones?

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.