Pain Management for My Herniated Disc

Diagnosing a herniated disc is primarily found through medical history and a physical exam. A pain management specialist will conduct a detailed analysis to rule out other conditions. Before recommending any treatment option, they can perform imaging tests like MRIs, CT scans, X-rays, or Electro-diagnosis (EMG). These tests help to identify the source of pain for specialists to create a treatment plan based on the intensity of the symptoms. Here are various treatment options that can help with pain management caused by herniated discs:

Pain Medication

Pain medication helps treat acute pain from a herniated disc, mainly if it's affecting your body in other ways, such as causing shoulder pain. Based on the severity of the injury, you can use lighter medications such as naproxen or ibuprofen. If you are feeling muscle pain or spasms from a sciatic nerve, nerve pain medications or a muscle relaxant can relieve the symptoms. Before taking any pain medication, you need a doctor's prescription. Although pain medications can be effective, don't take them for longer than prescribed. Unauthorized use can cause medication addiction or serious complications.

Physical Therapy

Physical therapy is ideal for mild herniated disc pain and involves a series of routines or exercises that help relieve spinal nerve pain. The activities can be simple stretches or complex routines such as aerobics. They are done under the supervision of a physical therapist. Physical therapy helps to reduce pressure placed on the spinal nerve to improve herniated disc pain. The exercises they use should not worsen old injuries or put you at risk of developing new ones. The initial exercises a physical therapist utilizes may offer some immediate relief, but it can take a while before you get lasting and significant improvement from physical therapy. Other treatments, such as cold and hot therapy, mild muscle stimulation, or ultrasound treatment, can be included in your sessions. These treatments can be performed independently or with therapeutic exercises, depending on what your medical provider has prescribed. 

Epidural Injections

Epidural injections involve your medical provider injecting steroids into the spinal column. These injections are a last resort when pain medication and physical therapy can no longer help with your pain. Epidural injections work by causing swelling from the herniated disc to go down. It helps to relieve pressure from the spinal nerve reducing the chances of experiencing acute and chronic pain. Before getting an epidural injection, you need a professional diagnosis and treatment. You will undergo tests such as a CT scan or X-rays to get cleared to get the injection. Your medical provider will scan your information to confirm that steroids won't trigger adverse effects on your body. An epidural injection better relieves pain caused by herniated discs than other pain management methods. 

Get Help From Pain Management Consultants

If you're experiencing herniated disc pain, get help from pain management consultants. Choose specialists who are board-certified as it shows they are reputable and trustworthy. Prioritize consultants with vast experience to increase your chances of a speedy recovery.

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