Bulging discs are a common occurrence and are typically asymptomatic in nature. Also known as disc protrusions or a herniate disc, they have the ability to cause significant discomfort throughout the body if the spinal cord and nerve roots are compressed by the disc. When compressed, the disc stretches and bulges, at which point it may tear, resulting in what’s called a herniated disc. Fortunately, there are many bulging disk treatment options that you can alleviate the pain from a bulging disc without having to resort to surgery.
Lifestyle changes are among the first-line approaches at alleviating bulging disc back pain. The changes made in one’s life can yield significant pain relieving results quickly. One of the most important and immediate changes you can make are in the areas of targeted stretching, weight loss, and light exercise.
Targeted stretching techniques are a highly useful way to mitigate pain relief from bulging disc back pain. Stretching can be done individually or guided through a physical therapist and will enable the spine to become more flexible and alleviate pressure on nerves. Stretching, paired with light exercise, can also help you lose weight while simultaneously alleviating back pain by strengthening the muscles surrounding your spine. Losing weight offers the added benefit of subjecting the back to less strain and thus results in significant pain relief. Weight loss, along with stretching and light exercise are some of the most cost-effective and easiest strategies to employ in a pain-relieving routine and should be implemented by anyone looking to achieve marked relief from bulging discs.
In conjunction with the above-mentioned lifestyle changes of targeted stretching, weight loss, and light exercise another significant change to make is avoiding heavy lifting or any other activities that needlessly strain the back or neck. Unnecessarily straining your back and neck on a daily basis can wreak havoc on your health and, ultimately, on your pain levels from bulging back discs. By simply deferring the lifting of heavy items to friends or family members can save you from adding sizable wear and tear to an already compromised back health. Focusing on looking forward and turning with your body when looking around can save your neck from pronounced strain as well, and keep you from experiencing unnecessary pain.
Rest is something that is also of critical importance in alleviating the pain from bulging disc back pain. A planned and targeted rest period can provide deeply restorative results that cannot be achieved from other things. Extended bed rest is not recommended for pain relief from this kind of back pain, though a planned rest period can be of immense value and yield marked levels of relief. Through rest, you are not only giving your body the relaxation that it needs, but you are also keeping stress hormones under control, and thus preventing your body from experiencing unnecessary pain.
In addition to implementing lifestyle changes, a person can use simple items to help mitigate the pain they feel from bulging back discs. Hot/cold therapy is very effective in offering pain relief. Ice packs can be used to apply cooling relief in a localized fashion to pain points in conjunction with heat therapy in the form of heating pads, warm showers, and trips to the sauna. These things can offer observable relief that can last for hours and may very well culminate in permanent, lasting relief from pain.
Medication can be used to augment a pain-relieving routine that includes lifestyle changes, heat therapy, and stretching exercises. There is a multitude of pain relievers and anti-inflammatory medications available over-the-counter or via prescription. Pain relievers such as topical rubs that contain ingredients like camphor, menthol, and capsicum can provide rapid pain relief. Many of these topical rubs are deeply penetrating and work through several layers of the dermis and are formulated to last for hours. Familiar brands like Bengay and Icy Hot offer warm and cool delivery mechanisms and are a great addition to any pain-relieving routine.
NSAIDs, better known as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, are pain relievers aimed at curbing inflammation. Readily available for purchase at any drugstore or pharmacy, NSAIDs come in familiar names like Advil, Motrin, Aleve, and Bayer. Be aware that NSAID use should be for short-term purposes not to exceed ten days in length. Be that as it may, they are excellent and effective pain relievers that are convenient to use; one or two doses can result in a full days’ worth of relief from pain.
NSAIDs are also available via prescription from a doctor and can offer even more powerful relief. Examples of prescription NSAIDs are the following: Anaprox, Celebrex, Clinoril, and Nalfon. Your doctor can also administer Epidural cortisone injections through a minimally invasive procedure that aims to alleviate the pain felt from the neck, arm, back, and leg inflammation and inflamed nerves.
Other treatments you can receive from a doctor for bulging disc back pain are chiropractic care and acupuncture, along with spinal decompression therapy. A trained chiropractor can address bulging disc pain, herniated disc problems, and other generalized back pain with significant results. In treating bulging and herniated discs, chiropractors will develop comprehensive treatment plans that take into consideration your spine, back, neck, and make necessary adjustments aimed at easing painful symptoms. They may, at times, employ strategies such as “spinal manipulation” among other chiropractic techniques to address your individual symptoms. Chiropractors can also offer various other treatment options such as physical therapy type exercises.
The Cleveland Clinic specializes in the management of back and neck pain and recently conducted an interview with Dr. Deborah Venesy about the different ways that people can effectively relieve bulging disc back pain. She cites acupuncture as being one of the many different options that exist for pain relief, alongside exercise and stretching. She states that “we are constantly researching ways to treat chronic back pain and... some people respond [well] to acupuncture.”
A more modern and commonly used therapy for pain management from bulging back pain is spinal decompression therapy. Per physicaltherapyfirst.com, this form of therapy is a highly effective, non-surgical procedure that can offer immense relief from low back, neck, leg, and arm pain, in addition to the pain “associated with spinal disc herniation, degenerative spinal discs, and facet joint symptoms.
Ultimately, there is an abundance of therapies and methods that can be implemented to effectively target, address, and decrease the pain experienced from bulging disc back pain. The various strategies available can be employed on an individual level or directed under the care of a health care professional. Regardless of which methods are undertaken, pain relief is something that is readily and easily obtainable.