I've spent the last 3 months with a thoracic (rib cage) vertebrae out of place. It's causing severe back pain when I twist, side bend to the left, and when I breathe. Fun huh? I went to two different doctors, a chiropractor, saw four different physical therapists, and got almost as many diagnoses: sprained back, inflamed intercostals, lumbar misalignment, tense erector muscles...the list goes on. It took me a while to get the "your vertebrae is in the wrong place" diagnosis.
And then one of my therapists was able to fix it (mostly). Horray! It was getting better throughout January, but still not completely gone.
Today was my first dance class in 5 weeks. I've been in dancing in those weeks, but not doing the intensity that a class demands. One modern class and my back was in just as much pain as it was in 3 months ago when I first felt the injury.
I came back to my room and did a little research to see if there was anything I could do. Lo and behold, I found an article from DoctorYourself.com called Spontaneous Release by Positioning. Even though the article stresses that you must have someone else do it for you, I was able to achieve a similar result with a spiky pinky ball on the floor. It feels better. Not perfect, but better.
Now as a warning, this isn't an end-all-be-all. Not all back problems are vertebrae out of place. Make sure you are sure of your diagnosis (aka you've seen at least 2-3 doctors who have had the same opinion). It would be best if you could teach someone to do it for you, but alas, I am alone in my apartment, so the pinky ball and floor worked almost as well. Now I'm going to go