4 ways to treat a herniated disc
Slipped, ruptured, bulging—all of these are terms used to describe the same condition, one that’s medically called a herniated disc. When this occurs, the gel-like interior of a disc has made its way past the exterior. Since discs are the cushiony supports of the spine, any displacement can result in various types of pain, including numbness, tingling, and/or weakness. Fortunately, there are several ways to treat herniated discs. Keep reading to find the right treatment option for your condition.
Herniated disc overview – Depending on where the hernia occurs, you may experience pain and numbness in your lower back, neck or extremities. And depending on how severe the herniated disc is, you may need more involved treatment.
4 treatment options – For persistent pain from a herniated disc, there are various treatments you can try.
Minor hernias – Doctors recommend over-the-counter medication, cold compresses and, possibly, muscle relaxers. You may be surprised to know that doctors do recommend careful but continual movement. Avoiding exercise completely may only increase your pain and stiffness over time. Be sure to try some of these recommended low-impact exercises to help strengthen your back and core muscles, which in turn can help relieve your pain from a herniated disc.
Lifestyle change – Try to identify the activity or motion that caused your bulging disc. Perhaps it’s a question of choosing a firmer mattress or making better dietary choices. Doctors have found that excessive alcohol consumption, a poor diet and obesity can all contribute to herniated discs.
Epidural shots – One option to consider is an epidural nerve block; these injections can be given periodically over the course of a month and are known to relieve the painful symptoms associated with a bulging disc. These can be effective because they use an anti-inflammatory medication to reduce the swelling that’s causing pain and irritation.
Minimally Invasive discectomy – At times, physicians may recommend the removal of a herniated disc altogether if it’s putting excessive pressure on your spinal cord and causing consistent pain. Laser Spine Institute has a minimally invasive procedure called minimally invasive discectomy that is used to take out the offending disc, thus eliminating any chance of recurrent pain. Laser Spine Institute’s technique only requires a small incision and is an outpatient procedure; for those who experience debilitating pain from a herniated disc, this approach is highly recommended to help achieve pain relief.