For the majority of patients who are currently living with degenerative disc disease, avoiding surgery is one thought that is forefront in the mind. Many patients – approximately 90% worth- are able to completely manage their pain, avoid surgery, and have most of their symptoms fade away within a three-month period. Pain management doctors in Arizona are able to help patients with multiple therapeutic options.
For those patients who have not yet had their symptoms lessen in this time there are steps that can be taken for goal of avoiding surgery. Time is the largest factor in the pain relief of degenerative disc disease. This is because given enough time the disc will stabilize itself and in many cases, will no longer be painful.
Thus, the main goal of patients living with this condition should is to control their symptoms in an effort to prevent surgery until the disc stops causing pain naturally.
Controlling the Pain
Being able to manage the pain of this condition through daily activities is the first step a patient must take in order to avoid requiring surgery. Pain control can be achieved by a combination of medication, physical therapy, chiropractic treatment, spinal decompression therapy and interventional treatment.
Icing the sore muscles after activity can help to control the occurrence of pain and reduce inflammation. Ice should be applied 10-15 minutes at a time and is a cheap alternative that provides a reliable source of pain relief.
For those that have tight muscles after an activity, a heating pad or warm compress placed on the area can help to relax and loosen the muscles. This can assist the patient during physical therapy by making the muscles stretch easier. Over-the-counter medications to combat inflammation are also effective for this condition along with a TENS unit.
Actions to Perform
Once an effective method of pain management has been achieved, the next step is to reduce the chances of worsening the condition. Staying active may slow the degeneration of the disc. Exercise and physical activity will not only preserve what function the disc still has but will increase the flow of blood to the area. This works to keep the disc bathed in the nutrients it needs, helping the discs of some patients gradually stabilize.
Spinal decompression therapy in Phoenix involves intermittent traction through the neck or lumbar spine to increase blood flow and nutrients coming in for repair.
A patient can also modify their daily activities to reduce stress on the lower back. Improving their posture, changing positions frequently to stimulate blood flow, and sleeping on a supportive mattress can all provide great benefit to the discs.
Diet and Health
The health of the spine is a reflection of the health of the body, and improving ones diet will improve the spine as well. Hydration and oxygenation are important for the healing of the disc. By simply adding more water to the diet while reducing items such as alcohol and cigarettes a patient can potentially improve their condition.
There are interventional treatments that include injections into the disc, facet joint or epidural space as well that may provide relief for months at a time. With proper pain management treatment that may include chiropractor Phoenix treatment, acupuncture, PT and more at Arizona Pain Specialists, patients are typically able to reach an acceptable level of baseline pain.
Arizona Pain has 5 locations and accepts over 50 insurances. Comprehensive treatment is offered. Call (602) 507-6550 for more information and scheduling today!