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What Helps Herniated Discs Heal Faster?

Herniated discs are a common source of back pain, but many people don’t know how to treat them and find relief. Fortunately, some treatments have been proven to help heal herniated discs faster. The two main treatments are chiropractic treatment and physical therapy, which can both provide beneficial results for those suffering from a herniated disc.

In this article, our team at Impact Medical Wesley Chapel explores how to help herniated discs heal faster. We’ll discuss the causes of herniated disc pain, potential treatments, and lifestyle adjustments that may speed up the healing process.

What are Herniated Discs?

If you are experiencing an achy or sharp radiating pain in your shoulder, arm, buttock, or leg, you may have a bulging or herniated disc in your neck or back.

These discs act as cushions between each of the vertebrae that make up your spine, and when they are inflamed, they can cause debilitating pain.

What Causes Herniated Discs?

Herniated discs are caused by several things, but they are most commonly caused by wear and tear and accidents.

Other causes include:

  • Lifting something heavy or putting too much strain on your back
  • Poor posture which puts unnecessary stress on the spine

Treating Herniated Discs

Herniated discs can be incredibly painful and limit your mobility. However, there are several treatment options available that can help relieve your symptoms and provide you with much-needed relief.

The right kind of herniated disc treatment ultimately depends on the severity of your condition and the location of your affected spinal discs.

Inflammation Relief

For mild forms of herniated disc pain, the best way to decrease pain is to relieve the inflammation around the disc.

Try applying a heating pad or ice pack to the affected area for 10-15 minutes twice a day or try lying on your stomach with one or two pillows under your hips.

If the pain persists, it is important to consult with a trained physical therapist for a thorough evaluation.

See a Physical Therapist

Your physical therapist will train you to perform special exercises and stretches to help relieve the pressure and pain in the spine.

As the muscles around the spine become stronger, the pressure on the disc should be relieved, allowing for pain relief.

Here, we take a closer look at physical therapy treatments:

Passive Physical Therapy Treatments

Your physical therapist may use the following passive treatments to relieve the pain of your herniated disc:

  • Deep Tissue Manual: This kind of manual is ideal for herniated discs as it uses a good amount of pressure to relieve the deep muscle tension and spasms associated with herniated discs.
  • Hot & Cold Therapy: Both therapies offer their own set of benefits, and your therapist may alternate between them to get the best results. Heat increases the blood flow, while cold therapy slows circulation.
  • Hydrotherapy: This can be as simple as sitting in a whirlpool bath or warm shower. It gently relieves pain and relaxes the muscles in the entire body.
  • Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS): These machines use an electrical current to stimulate your muscles. Don’t worry, it isn’t as intense as it sounds! TENS triggers the release of endorphins, which are considered your body’s natural painkillers.
  • Traction: Traction reduces the effect of gravity on the spine and gently pulls apart your bones to reduce disc herniation. It can be performed in the lumbar or cervical spine.

Active Physical Therapy Treatments

Active physical therapy can address posture, strength, core stability, and joint movement. Your therapist may prescribe an exercise program to achieve optimal results.

This may include:

  • Core Stability Training: You may not realize the important role that a strong core plays in your spinal health. A strong core helps your back muscles support your spine. When your core is weak, extra pressure will be put on your back muscles. Your physical therapist may teach you different exercises to help strengthen your back.
  • Flexibility Training: Learning how to properly stretch will prepare you for aerobic design and strength exercises.
  • Hydrotherapy: Like hydrotherapy is used for passive treatments, active hydrotherapy uses water for pain relief. In this case, it may involve water aerobics to help condition your body.
  • Muscle Strengthening: Building strong muscles is crucial to properly support your spine and better handle pain.

Chiropractic Care for Herniated Discs

Further, chiropractic care can be a great modality when used in conjunction with the above physical therapy techniques.

Some methods a chiropractor might use include:

Flexion-Distraction Technique

These spinal adjustments aim to reduce the pressure on your discs. It involves a specialized table, which allows for easier access to your spine. Your chiropractor will lightly apply force to the affected area with a pumping rhythm.

This is a gentle and pain-free procedure, making it a beneficial option for patients who are suffering from severe pain.

Pelvic Blocking Treatments

This method uses specially crafted cushioned wedges. During treatment, your chiropractor will put the wedges under both sides of your pelvis. By doing so, they will draw your herniated discs away from the affected nerve.

Unlock Relief from Herniated Discs

When it comes to treating herniated disc pain, Impact Medical Wesley Chapel provides a range of options. Whether you are looking for physical therapy or chiropractic care, our team of experienced medical professionals can help you find the treatment plan that suits your needs.

We strive to provide patients with the highest quality care and ensure their comfort and well-being throughout their treatment journey.

Contact our team at Impact Medical Wesley Chapel to schedule a consultation today at (813) 953-1002!