When you’re experiencing chronic spinal pain, the first thing on your mind is how to find relief. Some patients prefer to bypass pain management, assuming that the only way to find permanent relief is through some type of surgery. However, surgical procedures — even minimally invasive ones — do carry some risk; sometimes the patient must sacrifice some sense of mobility or flexibility after the procedure; and sometimes the surgery doesn’t produce the desired outcome.
The good news is that modern pain management techniques are often quite effective in treating chronic spinal pain, and some conditions can even heal themselves over time. This is why we always encourage spinal patients to look at a more holistic approach to pain management before we recommend surgery. Here are a few of the tools we can use to mitigate the pain safely.
Pain makes us want to restrict movement, but in reality the right kind of movement can actually strengthen the back, improve flexibility and reduce pain. In addition to in-office sessions, the physical therapist will often recommend exercises to do at home to help alleviate pain.
Working out in the water is a great way to relieve stress on the spine and other joints, especially for patients who have trouble exercising otherwise. Our HydroWorx Therapy Pool provides a safe environment for building muscle tone through natural resistance, and the warm water provides a natural stress relief for muscles, as well.
Another method for providing targeted, longer-lasting pain relief to the spine is through a variety of injection treatments designed to reduce inflammation and/or inhibit pain sensors. These injections may include epidural steroid injections, facet injections, SI joint injections, radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and more.
In certain situations, regenerative injection treatments like platelet-rich plasma or stem cell therapy injections can utilize the body’s own natural substances to accelerate the healing process. While these injections aren’t designed for immediate pain relief, in some cases they can provide long-term and even permanent pain relief by empowering the body to heal itself.
Every patient is different, and not every pain management technique is right for every situation. For more information on how we can help develop an individualized treatment plan to bring relief for your chronic spinal pain, call Polaris Spine & Neurosurgery today at 404-256-2633.