Finding Relief From Your Herniated Disc
Injuries to the spine can be both painful and debilitating. Back pain can limit what you are able to do on a daily basis and negatively affect your life. If you are suffering from back pain, it is important to talk to your chiropractor to seek the relief you need. One common cause of back pain is a herniated disc on your spine.
What Is A Herniated Disc?
The bones (vertebrae) that make up your spinal column are cushioned by small discs. These discs act as shock absorbers for your spine and keep the spine flexible. When one of your discs becomes damaged, it can bulge or break open. This is known as a herniated disc. Herniated discs can occur at any point along the spine but they are most common in the lower back area. They can be caused by wear and tear of the disc as you age or an injury to the spine.
When a herniated disc puts pressure on nerve roots in your spine, it can cause pain, numbness and weakness in the area of the body where that nerve travels. Many times, a herniated disc in the lower back will contribute to pain or numbness in the buttocks or down your leg. However, if your herniated disc is not pressing on a nerve, you may simply have a backache or no pain at all. Either way, it can be beneficial to seek treatment to relieve your pain and stop the problem from getting worse.
Treatment For A Herniated Disc
If you are having pain, see your doctor as soon as you can. He or she will ask you questions to help make a diagnosis. In addition, he or she may use an MRI or CT scan on your back to check for a herniated disc and to rule out other problems.
For the most part, symptoms of a herniated disc usually tend to get better within a few weeks or months. To help with your recovery, here are a few pieces of advice:
- Use a heating pad. Using a heating pad for 15 to 20 minutes every two to three hours can stimulate your back, reduce pain and speed up your recovery. A warm shower can also be helpful in this regard.
- Stay active. Unless you have severe pain, you should try to remain active. Staying active will help to keep your muscles strong and stabilize your back. Staying in bed for more than a couple days will cause your muscles to weaken and can make the problem worse.
- Do exercises to strengthen your back. Your doctor or physical therapist will most likely give you back exercises that can help strengthen your back. Keeping your back muscles strong is essential to the recovery process.
If your herniated disc is still problematic, then interventional pain procedures may be very helpful.
To learn more about how to remedy your pain from a herniated disc or to schedule an appointment, contact your San Antonio, Texas, Pain Management Specialist today. (210) 527-1166