Metal earrings and tooth fillings could be the cause of chronic back pain, experts claimed.
Pieces of metal that pierce or even just touch the skin could be setting off a massive chain reaction in the body, sending hundreds of muscles out of alignment.
And even the smallest bits of metal — such as tooth fillings — could be the cause of major agony in muscles far away. Experts say the nervous system automatically tries to move body parts away from metal objects because they are uncomfortable to the skin that surrounds them.
The muscles used in that movement will then place strain on other, larger muscles as they constantly try to maintain a distance. The result, according to a growing school of thought, is whole body stresses that cannot be cured by any amount of rest, exercise or nutrition.
However, experts say the good news is that something as simple as removing jewellery or having a metal filling replaced with an acrylic one could be all that is needed to end years of agony.
Chiropractor Simon King is one of around 250 professionals who are telling patients that the answer to their chronic back pain could be very straight-forward indeed. “I’ve always been fascinated and confused that some people with massive injuries made a quick recovery while others with minor strains took forever to get better,” he said.
“Then I made a remarkable discovery. Most patients who struggled to recover from pain or injury had metal touching or piercing their skin.” King says earrings are a common cause of back and neck pain, dentistry and jewellery such as necklaces and watches can cause pain and arthritis.
King said metal jewellery or dental work can irritate nerve endings which leads to the body altering the way muscles work, leaving people open to injury and recurring pain that does not go away.
He said the body’s reflexes react to the environment — for example even relatively simple animals will withdraw quickly when they touch something extremely hot or cold. “Those involventary actions keep you safe and help you to move through your world effortlessly,” he said.
“When the irritation or stimulation is removed, your muscles go back to normal. Sometimes, however, the irritation to our sensory nerves never goes away. Worst of the irritants we can’t get away from is metal. These irritants sit in contact with skin and mucous membranes and alter the way our muscles work. If the metal happens to touch a nerve ending, no amount of exercise, rest, or nutrition will return you to normal. I’ve seen hundreds of my patients cured of their back pain by removing their earrings and dozens of people have escaped slipped disc surgery by removing a crown.”
King, aged 46 years, from Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, has now trained 250 fellow chiropractors in his techniques — as well as a number of doctors.
“If anybody gets an injury that won’t go away they should consider what is happening there and look deeper. It could be caused by the metal jewellery they wear. If people are experiencing problems and they have piercing or metal dentistry I challenge them to take them out for two weeks and experience the difference.”
King’s ideas are now gaining currency beyond the world chiropractice. Professor Len Nokes, the co-director of the Institute of Medical Engineering and Medical Physics at Cardiff University — and the team doctor for FA Cup finalists Cardiff City Football Club — said yesterday there was a potentially sound rationale behind King’s theories.
“If you have a piercing or a temporary incursion you upset the symmetry of the body and how the muscles are attached. By taking the block out the body seals itself all back together again,” he said.
“Among professional chriopractors there is definitely some feeling that there may be something in it. We know so little about how people’s muscularity systems work. We like to think we know a lot, but we don’t. It could work.”
Professor Nokes said the area needed more research, but had some genuine promise. “It’s something I intend to look into,” he said.
The News, 8/7/2008