Physical Therapy for Spinal Stenosis
Physical therapy for spinal stenosis is used to alleviate the chronic neck or back pain associated with this condition. It can also help put you back on track for doing the things you love, like taking a morning walk, traveling, swinging a golf club or tending to your garden.
Spinal stenosis occurs when there is a narrowing of your lower neck or back regions. This narrowing often occurs because of the normal degeneration of your spine as you age. Spinal stenosis can also be caused by a herniated disc, spinal tumors, bone spurs, Paget’s disease or spinal trauma. To learn more about this condition, visit our spinal stenosis page.
Physical therapy can be beneficial to those patients experiencing symptoms like:
- Radiating pain
- Numbness and weakness
- Joint or muscle stiffness
- Muscle spasms and cramping
- Discomfort when leaning backwards
- Loss of balance
Consult your physician if you are experiencing any of these effects. He or she can determine whether or not the pain you feel is caused by spinal stenosis. In addition to physical therapy, treatment options may include over-the-counter medications like ibuprofen and acetaminophen to relieve inflammation and pain. To review other treatment tips, read our spinal stenosis treatments page.
Physical therapy for spinal stenosis can alleviate your pain as well as improve your strength, range of motion and flexibility. Therapy can involve:
- Deep tissue massage
- Strengthening and stretching exercises
- Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS)
- Water aerobics, yoga, walking, and bicycling
As with all treatments, you should always consult your physician before attempting physical therapy or exercise. You should also seek physical therapy from a licensed physical therapist, as trying this type of therapy by yourself could result in further injury to your spine.
There may be situations in which patients need more relief than what physical therapy can provide them. In these cases, Laser Spine Institute offers minimally invasive procedures that feature fast healing times and relieve symptoms in the vast majority of patients. For a review of your CT scan or MRI, and to learn more about our procedures, contact Laser Spine Institute today.