A herniated disc can be a painful and even debilitating, but treatment is available. Some of these treatment options are drastic while others are more moderate. The option you choose may depend on the severity of the problem and the level of pain you must deal with. Consider one or all of these treatments to help you handle this condition.

Use Heat or Ice Therapy

For immediate but temporary relief, you may want to try heat or ice on your back. While this treatment won’t provide a magical cure, it can help you get some relief until you can see a doctor or try another treatment. If there’s an infection or swelling around the disc, the heat or ice may help reduce it.

Take Medications

For longer-term relief, you can take anti-inflammatory drugs. You may find help through over-the-counter drugs or a doctor can prescribe non-steroidal drugs. If that doesn’t work, steroids can do the trick. They help alleviate the pain so you can move around and reduce inflammation. Sometimes this allows the disc to heal itself without further intervention. In the meantime, the medication enables you to continue your routines with modifications.

Attend Physical Therapy

Some doctors will prescribe physical therapy to help strengthen the muscles in your back. The exercises and other treatments may help reduce swelling and pain and enable you to move around better. In many cases, this treatment is recommended in conjunction with medicines or other treatments. In addition to exercises provided at the clinic, a therapist may send home exercises for you to do on days you don’t attend therapy.

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Consider Surgery

If no other treatment works or your herniated disc injury is too severe, surgery may be the best option for recovery. This option provides repair to the disc or replacement so that you can resume normal activities with no pain. Doctors don’t usually recommend surgery unless it’s necessary or unless other alternatives have been exhausted. However, it can be the treatment that allows you to enjoy a more normal life again. If you feel like this is the option that you need to seek, make sure to talk to a medical professional.

If you’ve been diagnosed with a herniated disc, you need to seek help from a doctor. They can recommend many different treatments based on the seriousness of your injury. If one doesn’t work, they may try another one until your condition is resolved. You don’t have to live in pain with so many options available to help reduce swelling and to repair the damage.

Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer and mother of two from Sacramento, CA. She enjoys kayaking and reading books by the lake. For your surgical needs regarding a herniated disk, Hannah recommends Southwest Florida Neurosurgical & Rehab Associates

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