A disc protrusion, also known as a bulging disc, is a spinal condition that can cause back pain and other unpleasant symptoms. If you’ve been diagnosed with this condition, you’ll want to learn about the various treatment options available that can help.
Bulging Disc Treatments
Your physician will likely recommend a combination of several of the following disc protrusion treatments:
- Physical therapy. A physical therapist can teach targeted stretching techniques to help strengthen the muscles supporting the spine. This can improve the spine’s stability and take some strain off the spinal structures.
- Medication. A doctor will recommend over-the-counter or prescription pain relievers to help manage pain. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are also helpful because they can reduce inflammation around the damaged disc and irritated nerve tissue.
- Exercise. Staying active by doing low-impact exercises regularly can help you manage your pain. Popular options include water aerobics, yoga, and walking.
- Lifestyle changes. Practicing proper posture, losing excess body weight, and quitting smoking are just a few lifestyle changes that can positively affect the spine and help minimize symptoms of a bulging disc.
- Hot/cold therapy. Hot compresses can help improve circulation and relax muscles, and cold compresses can help numb the pain. Many patients alternate between the two to help them find symptom relief.
- Corticosteroid injections. A doctor will inject corticosteroids at the site of the affected disc to reduce swelling. These powerful anti-inflammatories can provide symptom relief that can last weeks or months.
- Surgery. This is usually only a last resort option if more conservative treatments have proven ineffective at minimizing symptoms. When a doctor recommends spine surgery, there are usually two main options: traditional open surgery and minimally invasive surgery.
Surgery at BEST Health System
Are you considering surgery for a bulging disc? It is important to do significant research and weigh out your options. Traditional surgery is no longer the norm for spine surgery, and there are minimally invasive options with the surgeons at BEST Health System. Contact BEST and get started on your path to recovery today.