Facet disease — how it affects everyday activities

Facet disease occurs when the cartilage that lines the joints between vertebrae begins to deteriorate. This often happens as a result of the natural aging process, after years of wear and tear have taken a toll on the spine. Patients with this disease often experience pain, inflammation, stiffness, headaches and difficulty bending and twisting.

If you are experiencing these symptoms and you have noticed a decrease in your daily activities or quality of life, you should consult your physician. Having a spine condition like facet disease can cause pain and weariness that travels beyond just physical symptoms — you may notice a decline in your mental health after enduring months of chronic pain. It is important that you seek medical treatment and pain relief for this condition before your quality of life diminishes entirely.

Mental effects of facet disease

Dealing with chronic pain can cause many individuals to feel depressed. Patients who are experiencing feelings of hopelessness and despair should discuss their symptoms with a physician; prescription anti-depressants may be able to help. Many patients with facet disease also experience anxiety, difficulty sleeping and frustration. Working through these feelings with a mental health counselor can help to diminish the mental effects of the disease.

The mental effects of chronic pain should be treated in addition to the treatment prescribed for the physical pain, such as pain medication, physical therapy, lifestyle changes and many other treatment options.

Physical effects of facet disease

In addition to causing varying degrees of mental difficulty, facet disease can also make it difficult for patients to carry out everyday activities. Patients with this spinal condition may find it difficult to bend, move and twist freely. This may affect their ability to:

  • Bathe
  • Grocery shop
  • Lift objects
  • Play with grandchildren
  • Sit or stand
  • Work

Patients who have difficulty performing everyday activities should ask a loved one for assistance to ensure their needs are met. A physical therapist also can help patients to achieve the best range of motion and productivity possible.

Laser Spine Institute treatment for facet disease

If the effects of facet disease have prevented you from living the active lifestyle you enjoy, Laser Spine Institute may be able to help. Our minimally invasive outpatient procedures have helped more than 75,000 patients find relief from their neck or back pain, and we are confident our treatment can help you, too.

We offer a minimally invasive facet thermal ablation to treat facet disease. During this procedure, a small and precise laser is used to remove the inflammation and arthritis buildup of the facet joints that is causing the stiffness and pain. Our surgeons will then deaden the surrounding nerves in the immediate area to help prevent future pain at the site of the joint.

Contact us to schedule your initial consultation and to receive more information about how our minimally invasive spine surgery can help you recapture your quality of life.