No one understands chronic back pain quite like someone who suffers from it. The soreness and lingering dull ache can be difficult to manage, leading many people to consider surgery to find relief. In fact, it’s estimated that 80 percent of adults experience lower back pain at some point in their lives. And if you don’t want to go the surgery route, don’t worry! There are plenty of effective non-surgical treatments available too.
Here, we have outlined various proven effective methods for treating chronic back pain without resorting to invasive surgical intervention. So, if you’re looking for alternatives that don’t require downtime or pricey operations, read on!
Treating Chronic Back Pain Without Surgery
Conservative Treatment Options
A physical therapist can assess your condition and create an individualized treatment plan to reduce symptoms and prevent further injury. Through stretching and strengthening exercises, manual therapy techniques such as massage, hot/cold therapies, and electrical stimulation, PTs improve the range of motion, decrease discomfort and provide long-term relief from back pain.
Massage therapy can help relieve muscle tension and promote relaxation. If you’re dealing with chronic back pain, look for a massage therapist who has experience treating this condition. Swedish massage and trigger point release are two types of massage that may be particularly helpful.
This traditional Chinese medicine technique involves inserting thin needles into the skin at specific points on the body. This treatment promotes healing by restoring balance within the body’s energy systems.
Also known as spinal manipulation, focuses on treating musculoskeletal problems, such as chronic back pain. A chiropractor will use manual adjustments and manipulations to realign your spine and relieve pressure on your nerves. Many people find relief after just a few chiropractic sessions.
Yoga or Pilates Classes
These ancient practices are both great forms of exercise that can help strengthen the muscles in your back and improve your flexibility. Both yoga and Pilates can also help you learn how to properly move and lift things to avoid further injury.
Heat or Cold Therapy
Applying ice or heat can help reduce inflammation, relieve muscle spasms, reduce pain, and speed up recovery time. Cold packs should be used when dealing with sudden injury or trauma to decrease swelling, while heat therapies are better suited for chronic conditions that cause muscle stiffness.
Over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or naproxen sodium may provide relief from mild aches and pains, while stronger medications such as muscle relaxants, antidepressants, or topical creams may be prescribed for more severe cases. Always consult with your doctor before taking any medication, as some medications may interact with others you are taking or have allergies to them.
Joint Injections and Treatment Options
Epidural Steroid Injections
This injection is used to reduce inflammation in the spinal column that causes pain and nerve irritation. Anti-inflammatory medication is injected into the epidural space in the spine. These injections are a good option for patients with spinal stenosis, herniated discs, and degenerative disc disease. Patients typically find their relief starts within a week of receiving the treatment and it lasts anywhere from a few days to a few months.
Facet Joint Injections
Facet joints are the small joints that allow your back to bend, twist, and move. When they become inflamed or injured, they can cause immense pain. This procedure injects a steroid and anesthetic medication into the joint. It can be very effective for patients who have suffered cartilage damage or back injuries from twisting. Pain relief may last weeks or months.
Trigger Point Injections
Trigger points are small muscle cramps within the body of a muscle that are extremely tender. Trigger points refer pain to other areas of the body. These injections administer a numbing agent to the trigger point, allowing it to relax and reduce pain. If you experience back pain when pressure is applied in a specific area, trigger point injections may be helpful.
Sacroiliac Joint Block Injection
The SI joint connects the lower back of the spine to the pelvis. When the joints become inflamed and painful, movement can be affected and tasks such as sitting and walking. This injection consists of both an anti-inflammatory steroid and numbing agent. It is injected directly into the sacroiliac joint to relieve pain as effectively as possible.
How Can These Treatments Be Most Effective?
The most important thing to remember when treating chronic back pain without surgery is that no single treatment works for everyone. What works for one person may not work for another, and it’s important to experiment with different methods to find out which ones are the most effective.
You can also take a holistic approach, combining physical therapies with lifestyle changes such as exercising more, practicing stress relief techniques, and eating a healthy diet. With the right combination of treatments, you can manage your chronic back pain and live life to its fullest!
For best results, you can also find a healthcare provider that you trust, and that has experience in treating chronic pain. Your doctor can guide the best treatments for your individual needs and can monitor your progress over time. With the right approach, you can get relief from chronic back pain without surgery.
Get Relief for Chronic Back Pain!
Chronic back pain is a complex condition that may take time, dedication, and care to find the right treatment options for you. While surgery can be the best option for some patients, you can treat your chronic back pain in many ways without going under the knife. Always consult a board-certified physician or specialist to develop an individualized treatment plan that works for you. They are equipped to provide the best care possible based on your needs and lifestyle.
However, it is essential to carefully consider all options when addressing your chronic back pain and make sure you speak with a medical professional about what treatments will best benefit you in the long run. We are here at Integrative Spine & Sports to help answer any questions about ways to manage and treat back pain without surgery, so please don’t hesitate to reach out. Please fill out the form below to contact us today!