A herniated or bulging disc does not always cause pain. When it does, though, a doctor will explore every avenue of conservative treatment before resorting to surgery. One of the best tools to help bring about disc pain relief is stretching the muscles, tendons and ligaments in the areas of the body associated with symptoms – especially the back, but also the shoulders, arms, legs and buttocks.
If you have been diagnosed with a herniated or bulging disc, you should always consult with a doctor before beginning a new exercise regimen. A physical therapist can help you develop a stretching routine geared toward managing your specific symptoms. In general, stretching is intended to improve flexibility by mobilizing the spine and its associated soft tissues. Here are a few tips to remember when you begin a stretching program for disc pain relief:
- Wear clothing that allows freedom of movement
- Don’t overdo it – stretching shouldn’t hurt or burn
- Don’t bounce – hold the position for a count of at least 20
- Give yourself plenty of space to lie down or move around
- Repeat the exercise 3-5 times during a workout, and schedule it for every day or every other day
In addition to stretching for disc pain relief, a doctor might suggest several other methods of conservative treatment to manage the symptoms associated with a bulging or herniated disc. These methods can include over-the-counter or prescription medication, other forms of exercise, behavior modification or rest. If chronic neck or back pain persists after weeks or months of conservative treatment, a doctor may suggest surgery as an option.
Rather than settle for traditional open back surgery, consider the gentle, endoscopic alternative available at Laser Spine Institute (LSI). Contact Laser Spine Institute to learn how a minimally invasive, outpatient procedure can help you achieve disc pain relief.