Does exercise provide relief to facet syndrome patients?

Those diagnosed with facet syndrome may be initially treated with conservative, nonsurgical therapies. One of the most common types of conservative treatments for facet syndrome is low-impact exercise. Exercise helps to alleviate pressure on the damaged facet joint because it strengthens the muscles around the spine in order to help support the body’s weight. It can also subsequently cause weight loss, which helps reduce the pressure on the spine and facet joints.

The type of facet syndrome exercises recommended will be based on your overall health and the level of degeneration present in the affected facet joints. This treatment may seem counterintuitive, especially if your pain is particularly intense. However, performing a variety of low-impact exercises such as swimming, water walking, stretching and yoga may provide a number of pain-relieving benefits.

Physical therapists are often consulted when starting an exercise treatment program because they’re trained to understand spine conditions and the musculoskeletal system, and may better demonstrate the proper exercise techniques to help you avoid injury. Always speak to your physician before beginning any new exercise program, as some exercises could make your condition worse.

Benefits of facet syndrome exercises

Exercise may provide you with a number of helpful health benefits, including:

  • Eased pain
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Restored range of motion
  • Increased circulation
  • Improved flexibility
  • Strengthened bone and muscle

Your physician may recommend that you combine your exercise program with other conservative treatments, such as pain medication, stretches and/or hot and cold therapy.

When conservative options fail

Conservative treatment options — including facet syndrome exercises, pain medication and hot/cold therapy — are often effective in alleviating the symptoms associated with facet syndrome. In some cases, however, patients may not respond to conservative treatment and surgery may be recommended.

If that’s the case for you, you may want to consider Laser Spine Institute. We offer minimally invasive spine surgery as an alternative to the highly invasive nature of traditional open neck and back surgery. Our minimally invasive procedures are a safer and effective alternative to traditional open back procedures.^

Contact us today to learn more. We’ll even provide you with a free MRI review* to determine if you are a candidate for our minimally invasive spine surgeries. Let us help you take the next step toward pain relief.