Treatments Available for Back Pain
As back pain is quite common, there are a broad number of treatments available to treat this type of pain. While over-the-counter medication is usually the first step in treatment, some people may require a little something extra in order to relieve their back pain. Then again, making some changes in your lifestyle could help to ensure that you don’t experience back pain in the long-run. When the common back pain treatments aren’t enough, your doctor may need to prescribe some stronger medications. There are also a number of back pain clinical trials which are looking for people to enroll…..
Back Pain Medications
Over-The-Counter Painkillers: Things like acetaminophen and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen and naproxen) are often recommended for mild cases of back pain. In those circumstances, these types of painkillers are actually quite proficient at providing relief for patients. Please remember to follow your doctor’s instructions when it comes to treating your back pain with over-the-counter medication, as they can be harmful if misused.
Narcotics: Your doctor may choose to prescribe some type of narcotic (codeine or hydrocodone) for more severe back pain cases. These should only be taken for a short period of time to avoid dependency.
Muscle Relaxants: Muscle relaxants also help to relieve back pain, but please remember that these can also make you feel sleepy or even dizzy.
Antidepressants: Some antidepressants can be used for chronic back pain in lower dosages. Under the right circumstances, your doctor may choose to prescribe tricyclic antidepressants.
Education on Back Pain
While there is no universally accepted program that is used to teach people about back pain, this does not mean that you should not learn as much as you can about this medical condition. There are bunch of resources available online that can help teach you about what causes back pain or the symptoms that you may be dealing with. The most important part of back pain education is gaining a better understanding of the ways through which you can help prevent further episodes in the future. You’ll find that taking steps to get regular exercise and reduce your overall levels of stress can really be helpful.
Fitness and Physical Therapy
Another important aspect of back pain treatment can be regular physical therapy. Physical therapists have a whole variety of treatments at their disposal, including heat therapy, ultrasound, electrical stimulation, and a range of muscle-relaxing techniques which can really help to reduce the level of pain in the back. Once you have recovered from your pain, your physical therapist can also teach you a number of exercises that you can do on your own to improve strength and flexibility in your back and core muscles.
Injections for Back Pain
When the more traditional methods of treatment don’t work, doctors can use a cortisone injection, an anti-inflammatory medication, which is applied directly into the epidural space of the spinal cord. These injections work to reduce the inflammation that may be present around the root of the nerves, but it may return after a few months.
In other instances, a simple numbing medication may be applied in combination with the cortisone injection to the area of the back that is the source of the patient’s pain, in some circumstances this may be the facet joints of the vertebrae. These are the joints which connect all of the vertebrae together and keep the spine stabilized and flexible.
Surgery for Back Pain
On rare occasions, surgery may be the only recourse available for people suffering from chronic back pain. Surgical treatment can be used to relieve pain and progressive muscle weakness that is being produced by compacted nerves in the spine. Surgery may also be employed in order to repair structural issues that more intensive non-invasive therapies cannot repair.
As you can see, there are many therapies available for people who are struggling with the symptoms of back pain. However, you should always discuss these options with your doctor before starting on a new course of treatment for your back pain.