Non-surgical treatments are always the first options a doctor should consider when managing spine arthritis and other neck and back ailments. Non-surgical treatment options are effective at treating the majority of neck and back disease. Physicians should only recommend surgery when all other therapies have failed. Common non-surgical treatments include:
- Physical therapy – Often the first step in managing back and neck problems, physical therapy serves to improve flexibility and mobility while increasing strength. Typical physical therapy treatments include exercise, massage, electrical stimulation, heat therapy, hydrotherapy (aquatic therapy) and others.
- Chiropractic care – Chiropractic care will likely include the adjustment of the spine in order to treat neck and back pain. Chiropractors employ such techniques as applied pressure, massage, and manual manipulation (adjustment) of the vertebrae and joints.
- Pain management – Many types of acute or chronic back pain can be alleviated with such treatments as injections, drugs and medications, spinal bracing and others.
- Alternative medicine – Alternative medicine is a broad term used to describe non-traditional therapies including acupuncture, acupressure, yoga, biofeedback, and more. Although supporting research is limited, some people do report experiencing relief from alternative medicine.
As with all medical treatments, it is very important to consult with a physician before starting any treatment program. All treatments carry the risk of side effects and further injury to the neck and spine, therefore remain in a physician’s care throughout the treatment process.
In addition to medical treatment, there are a variety of measures which delay onset and lessen the severity of spine arthritis. These include:
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Maintain proper posture
- Remain active and avoiding any extended periods of inactivity
- Quit smoking, as smoking impairs blood flow resulting in nutrient and oxygen loss in spinal tissues
- Wear comfortable, low-heeled shoes
- Sleep on a mattress of medium firmness to reduce curvature of the spine
The Laser Spine Institute alternative
If non-surgical treatments for spinal arthritis have failed and surgery has been suggested, consider a minimally invasive endoscopic surgical procedure at Laser Spine Institute. For more information on the types of procedures we provide, review our page that describes how our streamlined patient experience can help you correct the causes of back pain. If you have questions, contact us. We will be happy to assist you. We also offer a complimentary review of your MRI or CT scan.