What Is A Bulging Disc And How Do I Seek Treatment

What is a Bulging Disc

Bulging disc treatment can usually provide the relief a patient needs without spine surgery. A bulging disc occurs when one of the soft discs that separate and cushions the vertebrae extend outside of the space that it normally occupies. This common condition is not necessarily a cause for concern, however, as it often develops along with the natural aging process. Moreover, a bulging disc is not always painful either and many people who have it are completely unaware of it. 

If you’ve been diagnosed with bulging discs it may be because you saw a doctor about symptoms like pain, tingling, numbness, or muscle weakness. Moreover, these issues are only traced to a bulging disc if the disc is pressing on the spinal cord or a nearby nerve root. While this may sound serious, treatment will typically begin with basic conservative treatment to manage symptoms while monitoring the progress. 

Your Treatment Options

Depending on the location of your bulging disc, the type and severity of your symptoms, and your personal preferences, your doctor might advise you to try one or more of the following conservative treatment options: 

  • Limited periods of rest
  • A break from lifting and other activities that could potentially strain your spine
  • A weight management program, if necessary
  • Posture improvement
  • Ice packs and heating pads
  • Stretching techniques to enhance your spinal flexibility
  • A targeted physical therapy program designed to strengthen the muscles that support your spine
  • Pain relievers and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Epidural steroid injections

Additionally, some patients explore complementary and alternative treatments to find relief from their symptoms:

  • Chiropractic care
  • Acupuncture
  • Spinal decompression therapy using a traction table or other similar device

When to Consider Surgery

If your doctor advises you to consider surgical bulging disc treatment to address persistent symptoms, you should be aware that a highly invasive traditional open spine procedure, however, may not be your only option. Alternatively, the board-certified surgeons at BEST Health System can treat these painful symptoms with minimally invasive outpatient spine surgery.

If you’d like to find out if you’re a potential candidate for one of our procedures, contact us today!