Nonsurgical treatments for spine arthritis

Nonsurgical treatments are almost always the first options a physician will recommend when helping you manage spine arthritis and other degenerative neck and back ailments. That’s because nonsurgical treatment options are usually effective at managing the majority of neck and back degeneration problems. Except in rare cases, physicians should only recommend surgery when all other nonsurgical therapies have failed.

Common nonsurgical treatments include:

  • Physical therapy — Often the first step in managing neck and back 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.
  • Pain management — Many types of acute or chronic back pain can be alleviated with treatments such as injections, drugs and medications, spinal bracing and others.
  • Alternative medicine — Alternative medicine is a broad term used to describe nontraditional therapies including acupuncture, acupressure, yoga, biofeedback and more. Although supporting research is limited, some people do report experiencing symptom relief through alternative medicine.
  • 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. It should be noted that this approach is still the subject of some debate in the mainstream medical field.

As with all medical treatments, it is very important to consult with a physician before starting any treatment program for your spinal arthritis. All treatments carry the risk of side effects and further injury to the neck and back, therefore it is important to remain in a physician’s care throughout the treatment process.

In addition to medical treatment, there are a variety of measures that delay onset and lessen the severity of spine arthritis. These methods are recommended for everyone regardless of your condition and include:

  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Quitting smoking, as smoking impairs blood flow resulting in nutrient and oxygen loss in spinal tissues
  • Maintaining proper posture
  • Wearing comfortable, low-heeled shoes
  • Sleeping on a mattress of medium firmness to reduce curvature of the spine
  • Remaining active and avoid any extended periods of inactivity

Laser Spine Institute alternative

If conservative treatments for spinal arthritis have failed to relieve your pain and symptoms and your physician has suggested surgery, consider a minimally invasive spine surgery from Laser Spine Institute. The minimally invasive decompression and stabilization procedures performed at Laser Spine Institute are effective^ alternatives to traditional open spine surgery when treating spinal arthritis. These outpatient procedures offer many benefits, such as small incisions, no unnecessary muscle tearing, and faster recoveries. For more information on the types of procedures we provide, review our procedures page and contact us to find out if you could be a candidate.